Munyai mulling lightweight switch

Azinga  Fuzile, seen here against Tshifhiwa Munyai at Emperors Palace, is one of the Easten Cape boxers who gained recognition after fighting in Gauteng.
Azinga Fuzile, seen here against Tshifhiwa Munyai at Emperors Palace, is one of the Easten Cape boxers who gained recognition after fighting in Gauteng.
Image: NICK LOURENS

Doctor backs up fears about weight cutting

Tshifhiwa "Atomic Spider" Munyai is contemplating moving up to the lightweight class where he says there are super local match-ups for him against SA champion Thompson Mokwana and former world champions Malcolm "The Stone" Klassen and Xolisani "Nomeva" Ndongeni.

Munyai says at 32, with walking weight of 67kg, he can no longer cut too much weight to make the featherweight limit, which is between 55.34kg and 57.17kg. That mammoth task leaves him drained, powerless and unable to perform.

"Looking at my age, I cannot continue torturing my body the way I do," he reasoned.

A medical doctor well versed in boxing warned that cutting excessive weight (more than 5kg in a short time) is suicidal, more especially for local boxers because they are not given enough time to prepare for their boxing matches.

He explained that the layer between the skull and the brain becomes thinner when boxers sweat too much. He said the danger is that the brain is then no longer protected and every punch that lands on that boxer's head shakes the brain against the skull and a lot can happen in that situation.

The doctor, who requested anonymity because he doesn't want to talk without permission from Boxing SA, said cutting too much weight kicks a human body into survival mode and it can also damage the liver.

He warned that muscles, including the heart, depend on the proper electrolyte (a liquid or gel that contains ions) balance. That gel carries an electric charge and plays a role in helping muscles contract and the heart to beat properly.

Munyai, a former Commonwealth bantam and IBO junior featherweight champ, looked supremely fit against both Azinga Fuzile and Rofhiwa Maemu in October and December but in reality he was a zombie. Fuzile and Maemu bombarded him with a barrage of blows to the head.

Munyai believes he still has lots of firepower in the tank to go on and win another world boxing title.

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