Boxing star Roarke needs good tactician

Rowan Campbell connects with an overarm right en route to stopping Congolese Patrick Mukala in the seventh round at Emperors Palace on Friday night.
Rowan Campbell connects with an overarm right en route to stopping Congolese Patrick Mukala in the seventh round at Emperors Palace on Friday night.
Image: Nick Lourens

Rising star Roarke Knapp can best be described as a machine but even an automobile needs an operator who knows and understands its definite mechanism so that he can press the right buttons for it to perform.

Knapp has got great ability, but he needs someone in his corner who will read the fight game as it progresses and be able to advise him to make adjustments.

Vusi Mtolo - if judged by Knapp's performance against Alexandr Zhuravskiy on Friday night at Emperors Palace - is not that operator.

One thing is certain though, Mtolo is a good fitness trainer, but he is found wanting in the department of assisting Knapp in the execution of his duties.

Knapp won his unimpressive 10-rounder against the Ukrainian. Two judges' scores of 97-93 and 94-92 were not too bad considering the closeness of the fight, but 98-92 was just way off the mark. At the most a draw would have been a fair decision.

Talking about shouting proper instructions, Peter and Sean Smith did wonders with Rowan Campbell against hard-hitting Patrick Mukala.

Who can blame Campbell when he put his IBO Africa super middleweight belt on line against a knockout artist who has left 10 of his 11 victims counting the stars?

But the Smith brothers read the fight so well, giving their charge proper advice.

Campbell's confidence grew as the fight progressed. He cleverly smothered the challenger who lost energy trying to free himself. Mukala began fighting off the back foot - something that he is not good at - and Campbell lined up straight punches which jolted Mukala's head badly.

Unable to defend himself from a flurry of power punches, referee Tony Nyangiwe intervened.

Ricardo Malajika knocked out Layton Gloss in the fifth round for the vacant Gauteng junior bantamweight belt.

Other results of the Razor Sharp tournament: Junior lightweight: Cayden Trutter beat Lopez Maluleke on points; welterweight: Darrin Rossouw beat Ramsey Hlungwane TKO

X