Vetyeka not throwing in the towel yet

Simpiwe 'V12' Vetyeka stops Thompson Mokwana in the eighth round of their lightweight bout at the Orient Theatre.
Simpiwe 'V12' Vetyeka stops Thompson Mokwana in the eighth round of their lightweight bout at the Orient Theatre.
Image: MARK ANDREWS

What do you do when life seems unfair to you? Do you ask, why me? or do you ask what you did to deserve this?

This is probably some of the many questions accomplished former world boxing champion Simpiwe "V12" Vetyeka is asking himself these days as he gazes up the sky.

Things began going wrong when the former SA and IBO bantamweight, IBO and WBA Super featherweight champion from Mdantsane found himself in a hospital bed with broken legs.

Vetyeka, 37, had been hit by a passing car while opening the door of his car at Amalinda Road in East London in May.

There was hope after a number of operations that he would walk again. But four months later, Vetyeka still walks with the help of crutches.

Vetyeka's blossoming boxing career - which saw him become the first local boxer under the new Boxing SA Act of 2001 to win the super belt after dethroning Indonesian icon Chris John as the WBA Super featherweight champion in 2013 - has virtually ended.

He is, however, hopeful that he will recover fully and resume his career. But some people in East London have already written the obituary of his career, even quoting him telling them that he had quit.

"The injuries were severe," he said. "I am still on crutches. The rumours that I had quit are disrespectful and insensitive. One expects to hear well wishes from people."

Vetyeka is remembered for ending the 15-year successful career of John with a sixth round stoppage in 2013. John tasted defeat after 48 wins and three draws, and retired immediately after that loss.

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