Joyi makes long-awaited return to the square ring
FORMER DOUBLE world champion Nkosinathi Joyi returns to action after being inactive for two years when he meets fellow South African Mpho Seforo in a clash for the vacant WBO Africa junior flyweight title at the Orient Theatre in East London today.
The 35-year-old southpaw, with a 26-5 record including 18 knockout wins, has had an outstanding career, winning the vacant SA mini-flyweight title in April 2004 and making six successful defences before winning the vacant IBO strawweight belt in November 2006 with a second-round knockout over Armando de la Cruz.
Joyi, who hails from Mdantsane near East London, won his second world title in March 2010 with a points victory over Raul Garcia for the IBF mini-flyweight belt.
After making two successful defences of the belt he lost it to Mario Rodriguez when he was stopped in the seventh round in Gustave, Mexico.
Since this setback, Joyi has lost four and won three fights, and if he has anything left in the tank he should have enough to beat Seforo (7-0-1; 2 KOs), who has been inactive for a year.
Meanwhile, boxing returns to Cape Town today, at the Castle, where Steve Kalakoda presents a card headed by Emile Kalekuzi (13-0), from the DR Congo and Azizi Mponda (15-2-2) of Tanzania for the vacant IBF Youth junior middleweight title.
In the co-main event, Namibian Jeremiah Nakathila (16-1) defends his WBO Africa junior featherweight title against former South African bantamweight champion Toto Helebhe (19-7) from Guguletu.
Meanwhile, former IBF, WBF and IBO junior lightweight champion Malcolm Klassen has changed his mind after announcing that he was retiring from boxing after his defeat against Azinga Fuzile in October.
The 37-year-old Klassen, who made his professional debut on May 22, 1999, has won the South African featherweight, WBO International lightweight and WBA Intercontinental lightweight titles in addition to his three world titles.
He has had an illustrious career, beating some of the best fighters around the world in the junior lightweight division.
Despite calling an end to his career in October, he has had second thoughts and a few days ago he decided to continue with boxing and move up to the lightweight division, as he feels he still has enough left and there are titles to be won in the division.