Sdinile thanks boxing fans

SPORTSMANSHIP: Promoter Andile Sdinile
SPORTSMANSHIP: Promoter Andile Sdinile

EAST London boxing promoter Andile Sdinile paid tribute to Eastern Cape people for rallying behind his tournament on Sunday.

He also saluted them for their behaviour irrespective of the results, which saw hugely supported local boxers Noni "She Bee Stingin" Tenge and her stable-mate Sabelo "Homicide" Jubatha lose to outsiders.

Tenge was stopped in the eighth round by American Layla "Amazing" McCarter for the vacant WBA junior middleweight title while Jubatha's reign as the South African featherweight champion came to a screeching halt against Sydney Malukeka.

The Limpopo fighter, who fights out of Westbury, in Johannesburg, under trainers Benny Pailman, Cliff Martins and Peter Faver stopped Jubatha in round seven.

Tenge and Jubatha are trained in Mdantsane by Lennox Mpulampula.

Sdinile's seven-bout bill was no ordinary boxing tournament but a ground-breaking legitimate world female championship to take place in the boxing-crazy province.

It attracted local heavyweight politicians such as Eastern Cape premier Noxolo Kiviet, mayor Zukiswa Ncita, chairperson of the powerful Buffalo City ANC's region Zukiswa Faku as well as Max Fuzane from the office of Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula.

The famous Orient Theatre, which accommodates 1500 people, was full to capacity but no untoward incidents were reported.

"I was dumbfounded by both the attendance and good behaviour," said Sdinile, who promoted the tournament with S'Phatho Handi. "I'm not implying that people usually misbehave during matches but I'm saying their sportsmanship cannot go unnoticed since Noni and Sabelo were defeated. You know, it takes just one stupid response to turn things around."

Bleeding from the nose, Tenge, who looked to be leading on points, was decked with a two-punch combo.