Tete at ease after morale boosting visit
Zolani "Last Born" Tete says meeting Arthur "The King" Villanueva at a press conference in England today will ease pressure off him.
In fact, Tete said the event would actually energise him because this will be a confirmation that their eagerly awaited clash is indeed happening.
"You jump in the flight and arrive in a foreign country for a fight but strange things have happened in boxing where a fight gets called off a few days prior to the actual date," said Tete, who together with manager Mlandeli Tengimfene, trainer Loyiso Mtya and the boxer's brother Makazole arrived in England on Sunday.
Tete (rated No 2) will oppose No 1 ranked Villanueva from the Philippines for the rights to challenge for the WBO bantamweight belt at Leicester Arena on Saturday.
Current WBO bantamweight champion Marlon Tapales - also from the Philippines - will defend against Shohei Omori in Japan on Sunday.
The hierarchy of the WBO announced last month that the victor between Tete and Villanueva will face the winner between Tapales and Omori 90 days after Saturday's elimination bout.
The fight between Tete and Villanueva was supposed to have taken place on April 8. No explanation was given.
"That is why I am saying once we hold a press conference, then it says the fight is definitely on and I can tell you that all the sacrifices [training throughout Christmas] I made for eight weeks in camp in Johannesburg were not for nothing," said the former undefeated IFB junior bantamweight holder from Mdantsane.
Tengimfene said his charge was already within the required limit of 53.52 kilograms.
He said they got a shock when Eastern Cape MEC for sport Pemmy Majodina paid them a surprise visit at their hotel in Leicestershire on Monday.
"Pemmy spent the better part of Easter Monday with us .
"Her surprise visit gave all of us a sense of belonging. It actually made us realise the importance of this fight," Tengimfene said.