'my man a winner'

FENDING BLOWS: Siphiwe Nongqayi blocks a punch from Malik Bouziane during their IBF junior bantamweight title fight in France last Friday. 09/04/2010 © Unknown.
FENDING BLOWS: Siphiwe Nongqayi blocks a punch from Malik Bouziane during their IBF junior bantamweight title fight in France last Friday. 09/04/2010 © Unknown.

CELEBRATED boxing mentor Nick Durandt has rubbished international reports that Simphiwe "Golden Master" Nongqayi was lucky to retain his IBF junior bantamweight title in France.

CELEBRATED boxing mentor Nick Durandt has rubbished international reports that Simphiwe "Golden Master" Nongqayi was lucky to retain his IBF junior bantamweight title in France.

He drew against Frenchman Malik Bouziane at the weekend and there were media reports that the South African was fortunate to have retained his title.

Fightnews.Com said Bouziane deserved to be crowned champion. His compatriot, judge Alfred Asaro, scored the fight 115-113 in Bouziane's favour. But Klaus Griesel from Germany and South Africa's Neville Hotz declared the fight a draw at 114-114.

Durandt said his charge fought under difficult circumstances.

"He received a vicious cut from an accidental head-butt in the first minute of the first round but he soldiered on until the last gong. But strangely this was not reported," moaned Durandt yesterday. "Rules and regulations stipulate that a referee has up until the fourth round to stop the fight. At no stage between the first and the fourth rounds did the doctor or the referee inspect the cut.

"I would not have complained had the fight been stopped after the fourth round. The start of the fifth round indicated that the opportunity of a stoppage was out of the picture. I then had to focus on containing the cut, which I did. That takes away a lot of what goes between rounds."

Durandt was disappointed that the national broadcaster did not televise the fight, which was Nongqayi's third abroad in 14 months.

Promoter Branco Milenkovic, who was at ringside, said the draw was a fair decision.

"Simphiwe was the better in the first half of the fight, while Bouziane came back strongly in the later rounds. The public opinion and (that of the) French media was that Bouziane left it too late," said Milenkovic, who commended Durandt for containing the cut.

He also revealed that Nongqayi will make a mandatory defence against Alberto Rosas within 90 days. The Mexican is the stablemate of Jorge Arce, who Nongqayi beat for the IBF title in September last year.

l The national boxing convention will take place at the Saint George Hotel in Pretoria next weekend.

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