Ancient laws are blocking advance of sweet science
Boxing SA must take the fight to sports ministry
In the midst of difficulties stifling the progress of South African boxing lies a potential for a positive outcome.
By searching for any positive consequence from the difficult situation, SA’s boxing fraternity can begin to have some inner peace knowing that these setbacks against the sport can be resolved.
Such hope for a better future for boxing is heightened by Peter Ngatane-led Boxing SA board’s decision to appeal to the government for an urgent review of some of the ancient laws that they believe stand in the way of the advancement of the sport in the country.
For starters, the fact that a licensee cannot hold more than one licence to advance a career in boxing is killing the sport.
Have a look at Floyd Mayweather Junior who has been promoting his own fights.
Just recently the American superstar purchased a mansion worth $10m (R139m) in Las Vegas, US.
This boxing champion earned over $1bn (R14trillion) after a reported $275m (R3trillion) payday for his fight with MMA fighter Conor McGregor last year. Mayweather has two private jets and 25 of the most lavish cars, one of which is a $4.8m (R66m) Koenigsegg CCXR Trevita – of which only two were ever built.
That is why I salute Ngatane and company for coming out openly about something that is hindering the progress of local boxers. Ngatane, rightly, questions some of the laws governing boxing in this country because they are ancient.
Ngatane must take the fight right to the door of the sports ministry and have coffee with sports minister Thokozile Xasa, who in my observation, is open to discussion and seems to have a soft spot for the sport of boxing. We want the laws changed now.
Xasa and the panel of six journalists – who presided over the SA sports star of the year award – deemed it fit to have accomplished boxing personalities representing their sport in the 13th edition of the annual SA Sports Awards in Bloemfontein where Hekkie Budler lost to distinguished athlete Caster Semenya.
Zolani Tete was nominated in the category of the people’s choice award – another category from which Semenya emerged the winner.
Legendary official Stan “Sharp Like a Razor” Christodoulou and the late awardwinning trainer Nick “Mthakathi” Durandt were awarded with the Steve Tshwete lifetime achievement awards.
On behalf of boxing – the hard and bloody sport which is about pain, suffering, sacrifices, determination and hard work – I say the mere nomination of the four showed the promise of a brighter future and paradigm shift regarding perceptions about boxing.
“The hard and bloody sport is about pain, suffering, sacrifices and hard work”
Floyd Mayweather Jnr and his Koenigsegg CCXR Trevita.