Year of verbal wars

2009-12-19 15:43

RATHER than involving a flurry of fists in blurred leather some of the fiercest fights of the year were fought with the tongue as the main weapon.

Words flew in all corners as the verbal wars – mostly between rival promoters Rodney Berman and Branco Milenkovic – took centre stage.

Trainer Nic Durandt, who has had to endure the pain of seeing no less than nine fighters leave his stable within 12 months, did not mince his words either following an acrimonious fall-out with Berman in November last year. Earlier in the year, when presented with claims Berman had made, Milenkovic described Berman as not being ­generous with the truth.

“That man is a big liar. If he says good morning to you you must first go outside to check if it is still morning,” said the Branco Sport Production (BSP) boss.

But Milenkovic was at the receiving end later this year when he accused Berman of triggering a tarnishing tirade from Baby Jake Matlala, who left BSP amidst claims of having been used and being owed millions.

“I swear if his wife cooked bad food he would say I had something to do with it,” said the Golden Gloves head.

A classic was delivered by Durandt, who had had enough of jetting out of the country and then coming back to find his stable one fighter less.

“Every time I go overseas all these rats and cockroaches come out to steal my fighters,” he complained.

Zolani Marali was the first to dump Durandt last November while the trainer was in Las Vegas. Then followed Isaac Chilembe in April this year, Isaac Hlatshwayo in August and both Daniel Bruwer and Zolani Tete in September while Durandt was in Panama, the US and Mexico respectively. Other fighters who have left include Cassius Baloyi, Takalani Ndlovu, Simphiwe Vetyeka and Leli Mbilase.

“People marry on a daily basis and people divorce on a daily basis. You can look around in both my gyms – there are no handcuffs,” said Durandt.

Asked about the possibility of rolling out the welcome mat for any of the fighters, Durandt said: “They closed the door and it will never reopen. They chose their path and must know that I am not a one-night stand.”

The trainers who were joined by the departed fighters also bore the brunt of Durandt’s displeasure.
“I do not have relationships with trainers.

“The only people I have a relationship with are my wife and kids.”

Durandt also said there was no possibility of reconciling with Berman.

When he returned from Mexico with IBF junior bantamweight champion Simphiwe Nongqayi, whose victory over Jorge Arce was preceded by ­triumph against his younger brother, Fransisco Arce, Durandt said: “Maybe we need to bring their father out of ­retirement because there is no Arce left to take on Nongqayi.”
 

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/Sport

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.