Wary ‘911’ pushes the right buttons
Despite winning the Gauteng lightweight title, Jeffrey “911” Magagane is in no hurry to challenge for the national crown.
The newly crowned provincial champ gave Michael “Maestro” Mokoena from Eldorado Park his first taste of defeat when he captured the vacant title on a unanimous points decision over 10 rounds at the Blairgowrie Recreation Centre a week ago.
The Soweto-based fighter, who is turning 26 tomorrow, said he still needed two or three contests before considering chasing the national crown.
“The lightweight division has tough contenders, and I still need to gather more experience before going for the national championship belt,” he said.
“[Mzonke] Fana is defending the South African title this month, and I will have a close look at the contenders.”
Magagane said that, had he been campaigning in another weight class such as the junior lightweight or junior welterweight, he would have taken a chance and challenged for a South African crown.
“I don’t want to take chances because the lightweight division is full of talented and strong opponents,” he said.
“I want to get to the top [through] fighting. I want people to know who I am [through] fighting. I don’t want to just participate. I want to do well and I want to win. I just like to get in there and fight.”
His trainer, Alan Toweel, who is from Linden, northwest Johannesburg, sang the same tune: “I will not rush Magagane and [would] rather let him have another few fights before challenging for a South African title.
“I’m not protecting him, but I don’t want to throw him [in at] the deep end this soon. I will put him there when he is ready. He fought tough opponents most recently. I want to perfect his art just a bit more.”
The lanky prospect, who is unbeaten in six outings, said he would challenge for the South African title only when he has nine fights under his belt.
He would like to fight one of the top five contenders in his next contest.
He became the first boxer to win a provincial belt, which provincial champs previously did not have. This is a new Boxing SA innovation.
SLOWLY BUT SURELY Jeffrey Magagane, seen here throwing a punch, will take no chances