SA champs urged to defend crowns
The ratings committee of Boxing SA (BSA) has instructed five national champions to defend their titles as soon as possible – and abide by the governing body’s rules.
According to BSA rules, all the champions have to fight mandatory challengers at least a year after winning the title.
The idle fighters are Anton Nel (heavyweight), Balemo Weliya (super middleweight), Nkululeko Mhlongo ( junior middleweight), Toto Helebe (bantamweight) and Siphosethu Mvula (super flyweight).
According to the latest BSA rankings, which were released this week, Nel, Weliya and Mhlongo last defended their crowns in 2013.
Helebe defended his title last year while Mvula has not put his championship belt on the line since winning the then vacant title in 2013.
The 45-year-old Nel, who is a veteran boxer with 33 professional fights, last defended his crown against Sibusiso Sibiya in the same year he won the then vacant title.
Committee spokesperson Willie Saayman said it was disturbing that these fighters had not fought for national crowns at home in a long time.
“We want to see them in action as soon as possible. This is the rule. With boxing now being televised live, we hope the fighters’ promotional and management teams will do all in their power to ensure that titles are defended,” he said.