By Ron Jackson
Former boxers Hardy Mileham and Francois Botha intend to revive the sport in KwaZulu-Natal. The two have formed a promotion company and will present their first tournament at the Ballito Exhibition Centre near Durban on July 25. It will be a box-and-dine event consisting of four-round fights. They hope to present another tournament at the end of October to honour one of the heroes of KwaZulu-Natal boxing, Tap Tap Makhathini.
Botha, who once held the IBF and WBF heavyweight titles, has fought the likes of Michael Moorer, Mike Tyson, Lennox Lewis, Wladimir Klitschko, Shannon Briggs and Evander Holyfield. He is still active at the age of 45 and had his most recent fight in March. Known as the White Buffalo, Botha has done an excellent job of promoting his own career. He has been a professional boxer since February 1990 and has had 63 fights. He started fighting in the United States in the mid-1990s and has been in action in several other countries.
Mileham was a talented fighter who won the SA junior welterweight title in October 1978. His career was cut short by a serious eye injury but he became a successful trainer who runs his own gym in Ballito.