By Ron Jackson
After three rounds of holding and mauling Mlungisi Dlamini landed the first decent punch of the fight to score a fourth round knockout over Zolani Marali to win the vacant IBO lightweight belt at Emperors Palace near Kempton Park on Saturday night. One punch, a short straight right to the jaw was all that Dlamini 61.18 kg needed to add the IBO belt to the WBF belt that he already holds.
Trainer Warren Hulley and Dlamini had been practising throwing the short right hand to the jaw against a southpaw opponent throughout their preparations and it paid off handsomely.
There was a lot of holding and spoiling through the first three rounds, with Marali 61.14 kg mostly the culprit. Referee Victor Loughlin from Scotland erred by not taking charge and even deducting a point from Marali.
Early in the fourth round Marali from the Eastern Cape stepped up a gear to put pressure on the Kwazulu-Natal fighter, but fell into the trap of dropping his left hand as he spun out of a clinch for Dlamini to land the right hand that dropped him flat on face.
A badly hurt Marali was counted out at 2 minute 59 seconds into the round.
The judges were Isaac Tshabalala, Deon Dwarte, and Lulama Mtya all from South Africa.
The new champion improved his record to 22-0-1; 14 and Marali dropped to 20-4; 13.
Thomas Oosthuizen 76.16 kg improved his record to 10-0, 8 when he knocked out SA super middleweight champion Tshepang Mohale 76.10 kg (7-3; 6) at 48 seconds of the fourth round to win the vacant WBA Pan African super middleweight title.
Isaac Chilemba 79.38 kg, a Malawian who is based in South Africa won the WBC International light-heavyweight title when he outscored Doudou Ngumbu, who is based in France but hails from the Democratic Republic of Congo over 12 rounds.
Chilemba won with scores of 117-112, 115-113 and 118-113 in a rather tame affair.
The new champion, who also became the African Boxing Union champion improved his record to 14-1; 8. Ngumbu dropped to 20-1; 9.
Hekkie Budler 48.84 kg was impressive in stopping Motswaki Moselesele 48.24 kg in 2 minutes 23 seconds of the first round to retain his IBO All-Africa junior flyweight title.
Two solid rights had the Free Stater on the canvas halfway through the opening round and a crisp left hook caused referee Lulama to wave the fight off. Budler takes his record to 15-0; 5 and Moselesele drops to 7-2-1; 4.
In the opening bout of the evening Flofent Simba stopped Bernard Vance at 2 minutes 26 seconds of the first round in a junior heavyweight bout scheduled for four rounds. Both fighters were making there professional debuts.
The tournament was presented by Golden Gloves Promotions.