Tete gets ready to defend

Zolani Tete has already started preparing for the voluntary defence of his WBO bantamweight belt against Siboniso Gonya in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on November 18, the champion's manager Mlandeli Thengimfene confirmed yesterday.

The fight is promoted by Frank Warren, who is based in the UK.

The explosive champion from Mdantsane is using Lesley Flavell's Warriors gym in Sandton. Tete used the same gym while preparing for the WBO title in April.

Gonya, from KwaZulu-Natal, is rated No 3.

The current WBO Inter-Continental bantamweight champion is managed by Thulani Magudulela. Tete won the belt after beating Arthur Villanueva in England in April.

That fight though was initially billed as a mandatory title clash for the rights to challenge then WBO holder Marlon Tapales of the Philippines.

Tete's fight against Villanueva, also from the Philippines, was elevated to an interim title bout when Tapales forfeited the WBO belt at the weigh-in for his defence against Japanese Shohei Omori.

When Omori lost via a 11th round stoppage, Tete was automatically upgraded to a full WBO champion, giving him his second major world title in as many weight divisions.