By Ron Jackson
Anton Nel is, at the age of 45 and for the third time in his career, the SA heavyweight champion. Nel regained the title when stopped Hein van Bosch in the eighth round in Bloemfontein at the weekend. The fight was over 67 seconds into the round, ending a fight that resembled a slow-motion movie. Nel, who weighed 120 kg, was too big and strong for the gutsy Van Bosch, who came in at 101.70 kg and was shoved around the ring for most of the fight.
With both fighters well into their forties – Nel was 45 years old on July 9 and Van Bosch will be 44 on January 27 – and well past their best, no one expected a scintillating fight. And it certainly was not.
Referee Phillip du Randt allowed the stronger Nel to use his greater strength to push, hold and elbow the smaller Van Bosch throughout.
Both were bleeding from the nose at times and Van Bosch took a count in the fourth round when a glancing right to the head sent him down against the ropes.
Nel appeared to tire in the fifth round but came back in the eighth to land a swinging right that dropped Van Bosch to his knees. Van Bosch beat the count but the referee immediately stopped the fight.
Nel improved his record to 17-11-3, with 13 wins inside the distance. Van Bosch’s reported record dropped to 11-17-2; 4. The title became vacant when Wiseman Dlomo failed to renew his licence.
The judges were Simon Mokadi, Alfred Buqwana and Freddy Makhathini.
Earlier, Themba Ntsele (50.76 kg) retained his WBF intercontinental flyweight title when he outpointed Motswake Moselesele (50.62 kg) over twelve rounds. The scores were 117-110 on two cards and 116-111.
In a junior featherweight fight Tello Lethebe beat Promise Cabe on points over six rounds.
The heavyweight bout between Bevan Bergman and Juan Bezuidenhout ended in a technical draw after one round.