WORLD BOX­ING CHAMP S TROU­BLING COKE HABIT

Sunday World - - Front Page - BON­GANI MA­GASELA

SIMPIWE Ve­tyeka has a Coca-Cola ad­dic­tion that has had to be given spe­cial at­ten­tion ahead of his WBA su­per feath­er­weight ti­tle show­down against Filipino Nonito Don­aire at the end of the month.

Ve­tyeka guz­zles down litres of the fizzy drink ev­ery day and his man­age­ment re­alised that they would need to cur­tail the habit to en­sure that he stays within the re­quired weight limit.

His man­ager, Andile Si­dinile, said Ve­tyeka (33) was asked to give up his favourite bev­er­age six weeks ago and the in­ter­ven­tion had helped to keep him within the 57.5kg weight as the count­down continues to his date with Don­aire in Ma­cau, China, on May 31.

Simpiwe has sac­ri­ficed a lot be­cause he un­der­stands what is at stake here,” Si­dinile said.

He un­der­stands that should he get past Don­aire, the world will be his oys­ter. He stands to make mil­lions from su­per fights against ei­ther Ni­cholas Wal­ters or Vic Darchinyan. An­other po­ten­tial money-spinner would be a fight against ei­ther Evgeny Gradovich or Alexan­der Miskirtchian.”

Ve­tyeka said he had set his sights on mov­ing his wife and two chil­dren out of the shack they lived in in Dun­can Vil­lage near East Lon­don in the East­ern Cape.

The money I am go­ing to make from this fight against Don­aire will buy a house. I am not in­ter­ested in fast cars or a flashy life­style,” he said.

I have my eye firmly on the prize and I in­tend to unify all the ti­tles in the di­vi­sion. My am­bi­tion is to be­come the undis­puted cham­pion so that I am able to se­cure a bright fu­ture for my fam­ily.”

Ve­tyeka s chief trainer, Vuyani Bungu, has kept him on a tight sched­ule and that has helped him for­get the fa­mil­iar taste of his beloved Coca-Cola.

Don­aire (31) has reigned supreme in three weight di­vi­sions and has held the IBF, WBO and The Ring su­per ban­tamweight ti­tles, among oth­ers.

But box­ing crit­ics be­lieve the Filipino Flash” has not ex­uded any­thing close to the con­fi­dent bravado of old in re­cent times and has looked vul­ner­a­ble since he was beaten via unan­i­mous de­ci­sion by Cuban Guillermo Rigondeaux last April.

His trainer and fa­ther, Nonito Don­aire snr, is not tak­ing Ve­tyeka lightly and has spent the past few weeks study­ing the cham­pion’s tech­nique, try­ing to fig­ure out how the South African beat In­done­sian leg­end Chris Dragon John to win the WBA su­per feath­er­weight ti­tle by a stop­page in the sev­enth round last De­cem­ber. John was bid­ding for his 19th de­fence of the WBA belt he won in 2004.

The Filipino me­dia quoted Don­aire snr as say­ing this week that Ve­tyeka has an awk­ward fight­ing style that will need spe­cial at­ten­tion be­cause it con­fuses op­po­nents.

Ve­tyeka and his camp leave for Hong Kong on Tues­day. They will spend a week there be­fore pro­ceed­ing to China on May 26.

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