Newly appointed Boxing SA chairperson Luthando Jack talks renewal of sport

Boxing gloves
Boxing gloves
Image: Alex Davidson/Getty Images

Newly appointed Boxing SA chairperson Luthando Jack has called on all stakeholders to join the new board in its planned vigorous pursuit of renewing the sport.

Jack was appointed by sports minister Nathi Mthethwa as the chairperson, the seven member board he appointed last Thursday. He is one of the three members of the previous regime that made a comeback.

The three are Jack from the Western Cape, Gilberto Martins and Zandile Kabini (both from Gauteng).

Others are Sakhiwo Michael Sodo from the Eastern Cape – who was part of the board in 2015 – Eric Nsikayezwe Sithole from KwaZulu Natal, Surej Maharj and Azwitamisi Shadrack Nthangeni (both from Gauteng).

Peter Ngatane, Khulile Radu, Mzamo Gumbi and Letlhogonolo Tungamarai-Noge are out.

Speaking to SowetanLIVE, Jack stressed the need for all stakeholders to be involved in renewal efforts.

“We really need to complete what I would call the national architecture of boxing because in my view we tend to put too much  emphasis on the role of the board and forget the need for the creation of other structures (promoters, boxers, managers, trainers, officials) to work with the board or a common vision and pursue it, he said.

“So that at national level you have these structures that work together to drive the renewal of the sport in the country; it’s not the vision that can be pursued only by the regulator. The board must instead work with stakeholders which must be organized at national level because right now promoters are organised at provincial level.”

Jack added that the entire fraternity must revisit the rules and regulations so that there is flexibility. He also mention the need to look at issues like boxers becoming  promoters. 

“We need to create a transition so that that you ease the life of a boxer which in my view is short-lived; you must be able to create necessary path ways, for example the way Mayweather Promotions was formed by Floyd Mayweather Junior before he hung up his gloves,” said Jack.

“A boxer can have a bigger control of bigger chain of boxing as opposed to current situation..”

In South Africa, you can only have one licence.

“We must work with the fraternity; bring it on board and march with them. They have got to understand and co-own  the vision so that our role as the board must be that of catalyst as opposed to us being seen playing a dominant role in the affairs of boxing," Jack said.

He added that they needed to address the architectural structure so that they are able attract corporate partners.

“If the fraternity is working together towards a common direction we will then be able to renew boxing and those with big pockets will come back because they will see that the brand has been renewed."

“We must continue to pursue the public broadcaster to flight during prime time boxing tournaments because if we are unable to showcase the talent of our pugilists  we will not be able attract sponsors. We also need to solidify our relations with Sanabao because we need a seamless transition from amateur to professionals because if that relationship is weak we will not have a seamless transition and have base for development of the sport.”

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