Ex-world champion Xolisani Ndongeni rejoins trainer Mzamo Njekanye's stable

21 December 2020 - 11:36 By Bongani Magasela
Xolisani Ndongeni speaks during the TLB Boxing Promotions press conference at Klipspruit Sports Centre in Soweto on October 1 2020.
Xolisani Ndongeni speaks during the TLB Boxing Promotions press conference at Klipspruit Sports Centre in Soweto on October 1 2020.
Image: Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

Former world champion Xolisani “Nomeva” Ndongeni has retraced his footsteps and gone back to where his boxing career started in Duncan Village in the Eastern Cape.

The boxer‚ who had aspirations of becoming a rugby player in his younger days‚ has rejoined the man who successfully converted him into a world-famous boxing champion.

Trainer Mzamo “Chief” Njekanye led the formidable Mount Frere-born pugilist to the 2016 Boxing South Africa’s boxer of the year award after successfully converting the former SA‚ IBO and WBF lightweight champion from a rugby player to a boxer.

“I told [former trainer Sean Smith] that I was leaving his gym and he did not have problems‚" he said.

"He did not look shocked though. I suppose it is something he was expecting because I once hinted to him that I was thinking of quitting the sport.”

The charismatic boxer – who won multiple titles and the R1-million after capturing the Dicksy Ngqula’s Premier Boxing League in 2015 – had been with Smith for three years.

The Johannesburg-based Njekanye helped Ndongeni to win the WBF belt.

The Eastern Cape boxer joined Smith after parting ways with Colin Nathan‚ who guided him to the IBO belt in 2017.

“I had good times with Sean and we worked well together‚” said Ndongeni whose success outside the boxing ring has made it possible for him to own property in Johannesburg.

"I will still be based here in Johannesburg‚” he said.

“Me and Chief [Njekanye] will have a way around working together.”

Njekanye discovered Azinga “Golden Boy” Fuzile and turned him into being a multiple champion before the left-handed boxer from Duncan Village bolted his stable and relocated to Johannesburg where he is still based under Nathan.

When Ndongeni left Njekanye initially‚ he was undefeated after 17 fights.

This included the SA and WBF International junior lightweight‚ the SA and IBO International lightweight titles and the Premier Boxing League.

Ndongeni won the IBO and the WBA Pan African titles under Nathan.

Ndongeni tasted defeat under Smith last year in the US but made up for that by capturing the WBF strap which he later vacated.

Their last fight together was in October when Ndongeni lost by a seventh round knockout to Sibusiso ‘Prince” Dlomo in Soweto.

Ndongeni’s fight record stands at 26 wins‚ 14 knockouts‚ and two losses.

Ndongeni had a stint with Luis Tapia at the Floyd Mayweather Gym of flamboyant former multiple weight world champion Floyd “Money” Mayweather Junior in Las Vegas.