December 1 will be welterweight hotshot Thulani Mbenge’s coming out party as he contests the African Boxing Union belt against Eric Kapia Mukadi in the headliner of the annual Christmas Cracker tournament at Emperors Palace.
Mbenge has moved unhindered to a perfect 7-0 record since turning pro – all via knockout – but he could be stretched. Mukadi, of the DRC, is 17-0-1, although it’s hard to draw a line on his opposition as all his bouts have taken place in the DRC.
The region consistently produces good fighters, though, and word on the boxing grapevine suggests that Mukadi is slick and slippery.
Cruiserweight Johnny Muller will make a welcome return to the venue when he fights undefeated Herman Potgieter of the Cape, a youngster looking to make his way in the fight game. He will need to produce something special – Muller may be a youngster, but he’s an old hand at boxing and won’t easily fall to the wiles of an upstart like Potgieter. They fight over eight rounds.
Crowd-pleasing Lucky Monyebane also returns to his favourite stomping ground where he will engage in a four-rounder against Bheki Mahlangu.
Rowan Campbell is the new boy on the light-heavyweight block and he debuts against Gabriel Mngadi. A product of the Smith gym, he’s said to be a tough youngster with a solid dig.
In other action, junior-middleweight Nathan Hammond goes for win number two, against Mandla Mpofu, at junior-middleweight. Welterweights Tyler McMutri and Sidonelo Ndzimade fight over four and the event, which starts at 7.15pm, will be opened by junior-welterweights Jabulani Makhense and Kalela Kaduma.