Ryno has a softer side

Ryno Liebenberg will be in action in Germany against Vincent Feingenbutz on February 24.
Ryno Liebenberg will be in action in Germany against Vincent Feingenbutz on February 24.
Image: VELI NHLAPO

Birthday boy Ryno "The Lion" Liebenberg put aside his usual trash talk which intimidates opponents and instead showed his softer side by paying tribute to Swedish boxer Erik Skoglund.

Skoglund is in a medically induced coma after having surgery for brain haemorrhage. Liebenberg, who turned 34 yesterday, lost to Skoglund for the IBO International light heavyweight title in Sweden on April 23.

It is reported that Skoglund was rushed to hospital on Friday after feeling ill. He had a sparring session in preparation for a fight against Rocky Fielding on the undercard of the now postponed rematch between Englishmen Tonny Bellew and David Haye.

Said Liebenberg: "I heard of his situation and that is quiet sad. Hopefully, he recovers and get on with his life because clearly his boxing career is over.

"Let us all pray that he recovers because no boxer right in their minds will wish for any other boxer to be in that condition - no matter what happened between them in the ring."

Skoglund lost to Britain's Callum Smith in the World Boxing Series quarterfinal in Liverpool in September, his first defeat after 26 straight wins.

"I still believe I was robbed and I had always wanted a rematch," said the rugged local who announced that he will be in action in Germany on February 24.

Liebenberg will challenge Vincent Feingenbutz for his IBF Intercontinental super middleweight title.

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