Virus crisis KOs Golden Gloves' tournament

Micheal Mokoena takes a punch from Jabulani Makhense during their fight in this file picture.
Micheal Mokoena takes a punch from Jabulani Makhense during their fight in this file picture.
Image: Lefty Shivambu / Gallo Images

Fight fans who had already bought tables for Golden Gloves' box-and-dine tournament which was to take place on Saturday evening at Emperors Palace in Kempton Park will be refunded. Tournament coordinator Jeff Ellis made this assurance yesterday. "We are busy with that process right now," he said.

Ellis was in charge of the selling of tables whose price ranged from R4,000 to R10,000 depending on the position inside the arena.

A box-and-dine tournament involves a three-course meal and it has become a viable concept to attract new spectators.

Ellis's associate promoter Rodney Berman had already paid sanctioning fees and bought two belts from the WBA and IBF for Saturday's international tournament.

Jabulani Makhense was to put his WBA Pan African and IBF Continental Africa junior welterweight belts on line against Namibian Harry Simon Junior, while Ricardo Malajika was to welcome Philippines' Jonas Sultan for IBF Inter-Continental junior bantamweight belt.

"Sultan arrived here on Sunday and he will be going back home," said Ellis, who made it clear that their money is safe with both the WBA and IBF.

"The tournament is postponed due to the national catastrophe."

Meanwhile, BSA CEO Tsholofelo Lejaka reiterated yesterday that no new tournaments will be accepted until the corona situation has been clarified by national government in terms of how long the national state of disaster is likely to last.

"In the immediate, other administrative work of Boxing South Africa will not be affected and the office remains open and functional," he said.

"We urge you all to exercise caution in the gyms and places of training by limiting contact among people, regularly washing hands using soap, using hand sanitizer and wet wipes regularly and sterilising gym/training equipment and gear (gloves, head gears and mouth guards)."