It's all in a day's work, says Tete

Zolani Tete knocks out Siboniso Gonya with his first punch in their WBO bantamweight title fight  in  Belfast, Northern Ireland,  on Saturday night.
Zolani Tete knocks out Siboniso Gonya with his first punch in their WBO bantamweight title fight in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on Saturday night.
Image: CHARLES McQUILLAN

Sensational knockout artist Zolani "Last Born" Tete registered the quickest knockout in a world title defence in the history of boxing when he iced Siboniso "Tiger" Gonya in six seconds to retain his WBO bantamweight tile in Belfast on Saturday night.

Tete beat the record of WBO junior featherweight champion Daniel Jimenez, who knocked out Harald Geier in 17 seconds in 1994.

A swift right hook to the jaw sent Gonya flying to the canvas. Referee Phil Edwards, of the UK, took a quick look at him and aptly called off the fight. Gonya was given oxygen while lying motionless before leaving the ring.

The official time of the stoppage in this history-making world title fight between South Africans on foreign soil was 11 seconds. That was Tete's 21st knockout in 26 wins against three losses while Gonya suffered his second loss against 11 wins.

Gonya qualified to be Tete's challenger after winning the WBO international title against Namibian Immanuel Naidjala in April.

"Look, there were bombs still coming his way," said Tete yesterday. "But I did not like to see him lying down there motionless. That is not what I had planned. Like I said before my departure to Belfast that I would be generous and give him four rounds. My intention was to send a message to Ryan Burnett who was at ringside to say 'here I am, let's us give the world a unification bout'." Belfast native Burnett holds the IBF and WBA titles.

Tete, 29, added: "When a fight ends in a situation where a boxer's life seems to be in danger, it spoils all the thrill. But, hey, this is our job. If you don't do it, your opponent will do it to you."

Tete is trained by former world and SA champions Mhikiza Myekeni and Phumzile Matyhila. Tete's only loss against a South African was to then IBF flyweight champion Moruti Mthalane in 2010. The other losses were against Mexican Juan Alberto Rosas and Argentinian Roberto Domingo Sosa. The fight on Saturday night was Tete's fifth in the UK where he is contracted with English promoter Frank Warrewn who staged the fight in Belfast.

X