ABU title shot for Malajika

21 November 2019 - 10:37
By Bongani Magasela
Ricardo Malajika, left, pummels Nkululeko Mnisi.
Image: Nick Lourens Ricardo Malajika, left, pummels Nkululeko Mnisi.

Former six-time amateur boxing champion Ricardo Malajika will take the first step next week in a journey of a million, by challenging for the African Boxing Union belt.

The 21-year-old Gauteng-based prospect, who remains undefeated after five fights, will oppose equally competent fighter Mnqobi Mkhize, who is also undefeated, for the vacant bantamweight belt at Emperors Palace on November 30.

The ABU is an affiliate of the World Boxing Council. Victory in an ABU title fight comes with a top rating by the WBC, which opens doors for prestigious WBC title fights.

Malajika, whose last ring appearance was on August 23 when he pulverised tough-as-nails Layten Gloss into submission in five rounds for the Gauteng title, is trained and managed by former fighters Anton Gilmore and Brian Mitchell respectively.

The fight will form part of the Golden Gloves tournament that features a catch weight non-title bout between SA light- heavyweight champion Nicholas Radley and national super-middleweight holder Rowan Campbell.

Meanwhile, Gloss will be in action on the night against Arnel Lubisi, who also tasted defeat against Malajika in June.

Lubisi is trained by his father and retired pro boxer Abram Lubisi in Mpumalanga, and the 20-year-old hard hitter boasts a points win over Gloss.

Said Mitchell of Malajika: "I really think he is the next superstar. I know it is a big ask for now but watch this space."