War­rior itches for SA ti­tle re­match

CityPress - - Sport - PULE MOKHINE pmokhine@city­press.co.za

Former SA su­per light­weight cham­pion War­ren Jou­bert says he is al­ready pre­par­ing to again take on Grant Fourie, the man who de­throned him.

The Jo­han­nes­burg-based Jou­bert sur­ren­dered his cham­pi­onship belt to Fourie in a first de­fence in July at Em­per­ors Palace. He had won the then va­cant crown by beat­ing Lungisa Jikani on points at the same venue three months ear­lier.

On Tues­day last week, again at Em­per­ors, Jou­bert, nick­named “The War­rior”, beat for­mer sta­ble­mate Ja­son “Bad­man” Bede­man by unan­i­mous de­ci­sion over eight rounds.

Now the glad­i­a­tor, whose ca­reer is be­ing guided by Colin Nathan of Jo­han­nes­burg’s Hot Box Gym, says he can’t wait for a re­match against his con­querer.

“I am 100% fit and itch­ing to get into the ring with Fourie. I want to prove to him the SA crown be­longs to me,” said Jou­bert.

He said he was train­ing hard and de­ter­mined to prove that his loss of the cham­pi­onship belt had been noth­ing more than a blip.

Against Bede­man, Jou­bert scored with crisp shots, al­though he strug­gled to knock out the tough fighter – a man he trained with two years ago at Manny Fer­nan­dez’s gym in Turf­fontein.

Fourie said he was keen to give Jou­bert a re­match.

“Look, I can take him on any time and prove I’m a wor­thy champ. I’m not scared of de­fend­ing my crown against him,” he said.

But Fourie ex­plained that his camp would first have to weigh up other op­tions.

Th­ese in­cluded hav­ing the boxer fight in an in­ter­na­tional 10-round bout against an over­seas foe next year.

Jou­bert boasts a pro­fes­sional record of 23 wins, four de­feats and five draws in 32 bouts, while Fourie has col­lected 16 vic­to­ries, seven losses and one draw in 24 fights.

Ri­val­ries like these are a sign that lo­cal ti­tles are again be­ing taken se­ri­ously amid a resur­gence in South African prize­fight­ing.

Look, I can take him on any time and prove I’m a wor­thy champ. I’m not scared of de­fend­ing my crown against him [War­ren Jou­bert]

GRANT FOURIE

PHOTO: LEON SADIKI

IN­TENSE War­ren Jou­bert (right) in ac­tion against Ja­son Bede­man at Em­per­ors Palace last week

Grant Fourie

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