‘Mbaks’ injects R10-million into boxing league to find next Olympians

15 February 2017 - 12:25 By Bongani Magasela

The South African National Amateur Boxing Organisation (Sanabo) Open Boxing League kicks off on Saturday at Mdantsane Indoor Centre‚ Sanabo president Andile Mofu announced yesterday.

National Boxing Organisation president Andile Mofu. File photo
National Boxing Organisation president Andile Mofu. File photo
Image: Supplied

Mofu paid tribute to Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula for injecting R10 million into the project which is aimed at producing boxers for both the Commonwealth Games‚ Gold Coast Australia in 2018 and Olympics in 2020 in Tokyo‚ Japan.

South Africa had no boxing representatives in the 2016 Rio Olympics in August. It was the first time since this country was readmitted in international sports competition that it had no boxers in that global showpiece.

Mofu explained that the league involves all nine province. Each province will have 10 male and five female boxers.

“We have divided the nine provinces into two comers – red and blue. The five provinces in the red corner are the Eastern Cape‚ Western Cape‚ Northern Cape‚ KwaZulu Natal and the Free State and their action begins at Mdantsane Indoor Centre on Saturday‚” said Mofu.

“It will take five weeks to get No 1 and No 2. In the blue corner we have Northwest‚ Gauteng‚ Limpopo and Mpumalanga.

“Action in Gauteng will begin once we are done in East London. Again‚ we will be looking to produce No 1 and No 2 from the blue corner.”

Added Mofu: “After completing with blue corner‚ we will skip a week before staging the finals at Mdantsane Indoor Centre. Winners will walk away with prizes and gold medals‚ while losers will settle for silver and bronze.

“Out of the league we will select a national team going to the national championships in Angola‚ but the biggest plan is to have them in the African Championships‚ which are the qualifiers for the World Championships late in the year.”

Mofu said: “We want to keep our boxers as active as possible‚ however winners from the league will be guaranteed a position in the national team.

“Out of here we will select a national team that will go to the national championship in Angola. But the biggest is the African Championships which are the qualifiers for the World Championships late in the year.”

Mofu – who jets off to India on Friday to conduct a seven-day coaching course‚ since he is an international boxing instructor – added: “We‚ as Sanabo‚ are grateful to the minister for coming on board in open [or amateur] boxing because this is a major injection in the sense that it is the beginning of our journey to 2018 and 2020.”

- TMG Digital/TMG Sport