BSA to honour Manning when lockdown ends

Boxing SA's chairperson Peter Ngatane / Bafana Mahlangu
Boxing SA's chairperson Peter Ngatane / Bafana Mahlangu

Boxing SA will still host a memorial service in honour of departed referee, judge and KwaZulu-Natal provincial manager Francis Manning when the world of boxing resumes after the lockdown.

Manning passed away last week and he was buried on Saturday in Durban. He had been in out of the hospital since last year, fighting ill health.

BSA executives could not travel due to restrictions put in place by the government in an attempt to curb the spread of the deadly Covid-19.

"We will definitely host a memorial service in honour of Manny once regulations have been relaxed," said BSA chairman Peter Ngatane, who, in the meantime, paid a moving tribute to the gentleman he had known for many decades.

"Francis served the boxing sector with passion, commitment and excellence over a number of decades.

'He started as a ring announcer and ultimately became one of BSA's best referees and judges.

"Manning was always willing to go beyond call of duty and in recent times he joined both the African Boxing Union and the World Boxing Council as a ring official."

Ngatane, who is the vice-president of the ABU and a member of the WBC's board of governors, added: "He also assisted with administration in the KwaZuluNatal when the erstwhile provincial manager Les Andreasen was still in charge. They worked well together until Andreasen retired in April 2019.

"Manning took responsibility for his actions and embraced criticism very well and where he might have committed any error.

"He was a people's person and always prepared to assist others at all times," he said adding that Manning's house was adorned with boxing memorabilia from his life and times in the sport.

"He also had love for poultry farming and he was blessed with a huge knowledge and expertise in raising egg-laying chicken.

"Francis will be sorely missed by his family and friends and the boxing fraternity worldwide. You've played your part, champ."

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