sa quiet in halls of fame

WHO recommends South African fighters and officials to both the International and World Boxing halls of fame?

WHO recommends South African fighters and officials to both the International and World Boxing halls of fame?

All South African boxing promoters, managers and trainers have no clue.

Shockingly, even Boxing SA chairperson Peter Ngatane does not know.

"I expect them to ask boxing commissions but as I recall, they have never asked for our opinion," said Ngatane. "So I don't know. I will try and check it."

A large number of South Africans devoted their lives to boxing and subsequently contributed enormously to the betterment of the sport globally.

But for strange reasons only Stan Christodoulou and Brian Mitchell are inductees to both sporting museums.

"A lot of South Africans could have at least been nominated," noted Ngatane, a member of the WBC board of governors and its medical committee.

Christodoulou and Mitchell were deservedly inducted into the International and World Boxing Hall of Fame in 2004 and last year, respectively.

Christodoulou refereed world title fights in all 17 weight categories.

Mitchell, who held the IBF junior lightweight belt, was probably inducted for his 12 defences of the WBA strap.

But what about Vuyani "The Beast" Bungu, who made 13 defences of the IBF junior featherweight belt?

Then an enigma, Bungu was ushered to war by Mzimasi Mnguni when he ended the reign of Kennedy McKinney on August 20 1994.

McKinney had just defeated Welcome "Hawk" Ncita, who was Bungu's senior at Mnguni's famed Eyethu Gym in Mdantsane.

Boxing magazine Ring named Bungu's win the Ring Magazine upset of the year.

Then there is Gerrie Coetzee, who was the first boxer from the African continent to fight for the world heavyweight title and the first to win it.

Also worth nomination is Alfred Buqwana, the doyen of boxing refereeing, who has officiated in many world championship fights, including abroad.

Other icons deserving at least a nomination include Peter "Terror" Mathebula (first black South African world champion) and Thulani "Sugarboy" Malinga (first local fighter to win the WBC belt).

Great SA fighters included Dingaan "The Rose of Soweto" Thobela (first local and African fighter to fight for the WBC belt here and win it) and Cassius "Shy Guy" Baloyi, a six- time world champion.