By Ron Jackson
Zolani Marali won the vacant IBO junior lightweight belt when he outpointed Gamaliel Diaz of Mexico over 12 rounds in a one-sided encounter at Emperors Palace, Kempton Park, on Thursday night.
Judge Isaac Tshabalala (SA) and Howard Foster (UK) scored it 120-108 and 119-109, whilst judge Andre van Grootenbruel (Belguim) had it 119-108 in a tournament presented by Rodney Berman’s Golden Gloves Promotions. In a poor and untidy contest with more wrestling and holding than boxing the bigger and taller Marali 20-2; 13 dominated throughout as he scored with his southpaw right jab. The only excitement in the bout was in the seventh round when Diaz 23-9-2; 10 was put down with a left to the jaw to take a count from referee Andile Matika (SA). The Mexican was down on three other occasions from slips and pushes.
In the most exciting fight of the night, Hekkie Budler (48.56kg) had to go 12 rounds to beat Charitt Mukondeleli (48.54kg) and win the vacant IBO All-Africa junior flyweight title.
The scores were Andile Matika (SA) 119-109, Howard Foster (UK) 115-112 and Andre van Grootenbruel (Belgium) 117-112, all flattering Budler, who was given a torrid time by the taller Mukondeleli.
Even though Mukondeleli had a point deducted in the eighth round for butting by referee Isaac Tshabalala (SA) the scorecard handed in by judge Andile Matika (SA) was way off the mark.
Budler improved to 10-0 and Mukondeleli from Thohoyandou dropped to 10-6-1.
Thamsanqa Dube (117.84kg) from Zimbabawe won the vacant WBA Pan African heavyweight title and upset the form book when he outjabbed South African Jake Els (103.84kg) before dropping him with a right to the jaw in the eighth round.
Els managed to beat the account but soon afterwards was backed up against the ropes and with left and right hands coming in from Dube and Els not fighting back, referee Wally Snowball waved the fight off at 2 minutes and 3 seconds into the round.
Jared Lovett (82.08kg) won his junior heavyweight bout against Fernando Vera (82.16kg) when the Argentinean was stopped at 2 minutes 36 seconds of the first round.
In a brawling and ill tempered affair it was announced as a technical knockout win for the South African. This was somewhat of a misnomer, because Vera should have been disqualified for holding and butting.
Former Olympian Jackson Chauke beat Botswana’s Peter Phelane on points over four rounds in a flyweight contest and in a junior lightweight bout, Octavius Mbira knocked out Sibusiso Khumalo at 1:28 of the third round.