Hexecutioner eyes unification title fight

2015-03-08 15:00

South African boxing hero Hekkie “The Hexecutioner” Budler aims to become the country’s first fighter to unify three world titles – World Boxing Association (WBA), International Boxing Organisation (IBO) and World Boxing Council (WBC).

The 26-year-old fighter, arguably South Africa’s finest boxing export, holds the WBA and IBO minimumweight crowns.

Budler defended them successfully by beating tough Mexican challenger Jesús Silvestre on points in Monte Carlo, Monaco, a fortnight ago.

Three judges scored in his favour with 115-112 (two) and 117-112.

Golden Gloves boss Rodney Berman said negotiations were under way to get the man from Newlands in western Johannesburg a shot at the WBC unification title.

“WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman was so impressed by Hekkie’s showing he said he would like to see our man fight the WBC champ for the title unification,” said Berman.

“A win will make Hekkie a three-organisation titleholder – a thing that has never happened in South African boxing, especially when there is WBC involvement.”

The WBC championship crown is held by Thailand’s Wanheng Menayothin, but Berman has made it clear Budler will not travel to Thailand to fight there.

“Fighting for a unique title will suit him well. I won’t relax until that big fight actually happens,” said Berman.

Budler is ecstatic at the prospect.

“Being afforded an opportunity to add the WBC title, which is regarded as being the most prestigious, will be good for me. I’ll grab the opportunity with both hands,” he said.

Budler has an admirable professional record with 29 wins (nine by knockout) and one defeat in 30 paid bouts.

The Hexecutioner has also set his sights on fighting for the vacant Ring Magazine title.

He is ranked number one with Japan’s Katsunari Takayama second.

“The Ring is owned by former Mexican-American professional boxer and Olympic gold medallist Oscar De La Hoya.

“Fighting for the title will be great,” he said.

Budler has successfully defended his WBA crown four times and the IBO title eight times.

He described his last bout as one of his toughest with Sylvestre being a tricky campaigner.

“I’m glad I managed to win in all three judges’ eyes because my opponent was awkward.

“I wanted a knockout but it was impossible,” he explained.

With such dedication and the will to win, heads are sure to roll with the Hexecutioner in the ring.

.?Meanwhile, IBO welterweight champion Ali “Rush Hour” Funeka (36) is concerned about the “slow pace” of his title defence. He has not seen any action since winning the vacant title against Russian Roman Belaev through a technical decision in November.

The Eastern Cape boxer was crowned IBO champion when the fight was stopped in the 12th round after Belaev sustained a deep cut above his right eye.

The rules of boxing stipulate that a champion should defend his crown at least 90 days after winning the title.

“It pains [me] a great deal to think I have not made any title defence since November.

“I believe, as world champion, I’m supposed to be kept active, but nothing is happening,” said Funeka.

He said Berman had promised him “some action” soon after the November win.

“This is not on but I guess something concrete will come my way soon,” he said.

Berman said Funeka would fight on June 6.

“We are negotiating the venue and his next opponent.

“He should be calm because the fight will definitely be sorted out for him,” said Berman.

Funeka has a fight record of 30 victories, three defeats, three draws and 25 knockouts.

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