Boxing superstar Mayweather to visit South Africa

Global boxing megastar Floyd "Money" Mayweather Jnr will arrive in South Africa next Wednesday for a number of boxing clinics around the country in a five-day stay.

This was confirmed by Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula at a special media briefing at OR Tambo International Airport yesterday.

Mbalula said the 36-year-old American - the world's best pound-for- pound fighter in the past two decades who is undefeated after 45 fights - will visit Soweto, Bloemfontein, East London and Cape Town.

The minister said the famous boxer was doing this out of the reservoir of goodwill.

"No financial liabilities were incurred by our office," he said.

Mayweather was supposed to have visited the country for the Sports Awards at Sun City in November last year.

But the five-division world champion who also won eight world titles and the lineal championship in three different weight classes shelved those plans.

"Our partnership with Floyd is about developing an academy," Mbalula said. "You will know when 'Baby' Jake Matlala passed on, I basically announced that we will upgrade and develop the Dube Boxing Club in Soweto [which was Matlala' s gym from the amateur ranks until the end of his illustrious professional career] and name it after him.

So this is part of the project that we will undertake, including an academy in the club. We will also have a dinner at Emperors Palace on the 18th where some sporting memorabilia such as Floyd's boxing boots and gowns will be auctioned. The money raised will go to the project."

Mbalula said Mayweather was keen on the whole idea of developing boxing in the country.