Tete plans to end in­ter­na­tional ti­tle drought

The New Age (Gauteng) - - SPORT 14 - LINDA XIMBA news@the­newage.co.za

APART from re­claim­ing the world cham­pi­onship, Zolani “Last Born” Tete will be out to be­come the first South African boxer in 17 years to win the World Box­ing Or­gan­i­sa­tion (WBO) ti­tle.

The for­mer un­de­feated IBF ju­nior ban­tamweight cham­pion will take on top ranked Arthur Vil­lanueva for the WBO ban­tamweight ti­tle elim­i­na­tor in Le­ices­ter Arena in Eng­land on Satur­day.

The Puerto Rico-based world or­gan­i­sa­tion has an­nounced that the win­ner of the bout will face the win­ner be­tween cham­pion Fil­lipino Mar­lon Ta­pales and Sho­hei Omori 90 days af­ter Satur­day’s elim­i­na­tion bout.

Ta­pales and Omori will meet in Osaka, Ja­pan, on Sun­day.

The last time South Africa pro­duced a WBO cham­pion was in 2003. Cor­rie San­ders, who was shot dead in Septem­ber last year, shocked the world when he knocked out Wladimir Kl­itschko in Hanover in Ger­many.

But it was Din­gaan “Rose of Soweto” Tho­bela who paved the way in 1990 in the US. He de­feated Mex­i­can Mauri­cio Acaves on points in the light­weight divi­sion.

Three years later, Ja­cob “Baby Jake” Mat­lala would step up to claim the crown in the fly­weight divi­sion by de­feat­ing Scot­land’s Pat Clin­ton in the UK.

Last year, two box­ers failed in their ef­forts to bring home the WBO crown.

Age­ing Mzonke Fana was eas­ily de­feated by light­weight cham­pion Flanagan in Cardiff, Wales, in July last year.

And Thabiso “The Rock” Mchunu was stopped in his tracks by highly rated Olek­san­dar Usyk in a cruis­er­weight bout in Car­li­fo­nia in De­cem­ber last year.

FIGHT NIGHT: Zolani Tete will take on Puerto Ri­can Arthur Vil­lanueva at the Le­ices­ter Arena in Eng­land to­mor­row.

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