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Simpiwe Vetyeka revives career with WBO lightweight triumph

A file photo of Simpiwe Vetyeka, left, throwing a punch.
A file photo of Simpiwe Vetyeka, left, throwing a punch.
Image: NICK LOURENS

Mdantsane based Duncan Village born former World Boxing Association Super featherweight boxing champion Simpiwe "V12" Vetyeka revived his flagging career when the 37 year old veteran won the WBO lightweight title with an eighth round knockout of Thompson "Silent Destroyer" Mokwana at Orient Theatre on Friday evening.

Vetyeka, who fought his first fight in the lightweight division where Mokwana rules with an iron fist as the South African champion - had last fought in October when he was outpointed by nine fight novice Lerato 'Lights Out" Dlamini over 10 rounds at Emperors Palace.

Vetyeka - whose victory for the WBA Super featherweight title against Indonesian boxing legend Chris "Dragon" John in 2013 made him the first local boxer in history to win a Super title - suffered his fourth defeat against 28 wins when he lost to Dlamini from the Free State.

But Vetyeka - who had little time with new trainer Sean Smith to train for that fight - moved up the two weight divisions and accepted a fight from promoter Ayanda Matiti to face Mokwana in Xaba Promotions bill last Friday night.

Expectations were that Mokwana, a natural lightweight campaigner, would be too strong for Vetyeka,. But the talented former IBO champion who made his debut under trainer Ncedo Cecane from the fames Eyethu Gym of trainer/cum manager and promoter Mzimasi Mnguni - just did a number on Mokwana.

That short route win was Vetyeka's 17th in 29 victories while 33 year old Mokwana suffered his 11th loss against  23 wins and a draw.

Vetyeka boxed brilliantly from behind is schooled jab before backing up Mokwana against the ropes in the eighth round to score with a combination of lefts and rights to the head.

Vetyeka then landed with a big right hand to the side of the head that sent Mokwana down on his knees where he was counted out by referee Clifford Mbelu in two minutes and 21 seconds.

In the main supporting bout South African junior bantamweight champion Yanga Sigqibo made a successful defence - his first for his title, after earning a unanimous points decision against mandatory challenger Sabelo Ngebinyana. Sigqibo from Mdantsane improved to 10 wins in 12 fights while Ngebinyana from Cape Town suffered his third loss against nine wins.  

The fight was not great though. The scores were 116-112, 117-111 and 118 to 109. Sigqibo had no problems handling the left handed challenger.

Matiti's favourite novice Uyanda "Big Bear" Nogogo outpointed Onke Duku in their junior welterweight bout over eight rounds. The scores were 77-74, 78-72 and 78-74.

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