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Fortuin to cement iconic place with second world title

Ex-IBO Intercontinental bantamweight holder boasts14 wins

Lonki Witbooi and his fighter Sharadene Fortuin leave for Dubai tomorrow
Lonki Witbooi and his fighter Sharadene Fortuin leave for Dubai tomorrow
Image: Supplied

SA two-time bantamweight boxing champion Sharadene Fortuin embarks on a journey towards reclaiming her seniority in the international boxing space.

She lost her IBO belt in the boardrooms in 2018 due to failure to defend, IBO president Edward Levine told Sowetan.

Levine's boxing body has crowned over 20 South African champions over the past decade and many of them went on to achieve worldwide fame.

With new trainer Lonki Witbooi guiding her career, Fortuin who defeated Patience Mustat on points in Polokwane in September, will oppose Nastaran Fathi from Iran for the WBA Gold junior featherweight belt in Dubai on Saturday.

Fortuin – the only boxer, and first champion from a small village known as Seymour in the Eastern Cape, and Witbooi jet off to Dubai tomorrow. The duo will be the first female boxer and trainer from SA to fight in the Arab country.

Fathi, 34, is undefeated in 11 fights while 29-year-old Fortuin, a former IBO Intercontinental bantamweight holder has 14 wins, two losses and two draws. The only local boxer to beat her is Bukiwe “Anaconda” Nonina and the other defeat was to Malawian Ellen Simwka.

The winner is guarantees a top rating with the WBA. “I believe Fortuin has surpassed the development stage; it's time she swims with the big sharks,” said Booi.

“We are thankful for the support that Fortuin is getting from the South African public; she's not only going to do it for herself but also for the country and in the process empower other women, demonstrating that sport can change peoples lives.

“She's cementing her place as the SA female sporting icon, going for her second world title.”

Witboo, who is from Lukhanyo Boxing Club in Mdantsane, said talented Fortuin whose achievements are a far cry to her capabilities, has been in the gym nonstop.

“That is why I am making an effort when it comes to her career; she's made a complete turnaround and I am proud of her,” said Witbooi, who credited BSA 2018 manager of the yearwinner Mlandeli Tengimfene for his mentorship.

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