Durandt punches back

2009-11-21 14:03

TRAINER Nic Durandt, who has never commented on the reasons behind the departure of his fighters, has made some shocking revelations, startling allegations and eye-raising implications in an exclusive interview with City Press.

Cassius Baloyi
Baloyi left Durandt after losing the IBF junior lightweight title to Malcolm Klassen in April amid claims the trainer had sold him out.

Durandt has hit back, attributing their fall-out to Baloyi’s attitude and empty promises made by Golden Gloves Promotions (GGP).

GGP had promised Baloyi a fight either against Marco Antonio ­Barrera or a WBC unification.

“I would have kept Klassen aside, led Baloyi to the WBC title and then vacated IBF for Klassen.”

But GGP’s promises fizzled out and the IBF ordered Baloyi-Klassen purse bids.

“A week before purse bids, I called Rodney Berman on loudspeaker. Baloyi was with me.

“Berman said he was not interested in the purse bids. In fact he said he was no longer interested in ­Baloyi because he was over the hill.”

Baloyi then joined Branco Milenkovic.

Durandt, who chose to train Baloyi as they had been together for 16 years, denied betraying the fighter.

“Baloyi has been in this business long enough. If he was not happy, he should have pulled out,” said Durandt with a huge picture of the two – when Baloyi won his sixth world title – staring down at him.

Durandt said Baloyi’s utterances were unfortunate.

“I could even take him to court for damages. His claims allude that I am a criminal.”

He accused Baloyi of ill discipline.

“Baloyi started not arriving in the gym at normal hours.

“He would tell me that he had attended a function with his sponsors in Tembisa the night before and had overslept.

“Every fight I prepared for with Baloyi, we would train in the Norwood gym at 6am and then go to the downtown gym in the afternoon.

“But for the fight against Klassen he refused to come in the morning, citing the ‘fact’ that he was not ­getting enough rest.”

Baloyi also allegedly chose sparring partners.

“That was not the Baloyi I knew. He had never before told me who, why and how.”

Isaac Hlatshwayo
Durandt alleged that Hlatshwayo, who dumped the trainer while he was in the USA for Klassen’s fight against Robert Guerrero, owed him R80?000.

“Hlatshwayo owes me R80?000 in continuous loans taken before the (Delvin) Rodriguez fight due to ­personal problems.”
Durandt said Hlatshwayo’s departure had come as a shock.

“I came back from the USA with an IBF champion (Hlatshwayo) and then six days later I departed with Klassen for his IBF defence.

“While I was overseas, Milenkovic called to tell me that Hlatshwayo had joined Fernandes. I was shocked – I had just arrived at OR Tambo International with an IBF champion a few days previously.”

Durandt said Hlatshwayo’s move had affected his preparations for ­Klassen’s fight.

“It was very hard to focus. At a media conference before the fight people came to congratulate me for winning the IBF title with Hlatshwayo.”

On his return, Durandt did some digging.

“I came back home and started puzzling this together. I found out that Hlatshwayo had been meeting with Berman even before we went to America.

“It was decided that he was going to rejoin Golden Gloves, but for this to happen he had to fire Durandt.

“What he did to me was inexplicable and inexcusable.”

Isaac Chilembe
Malawi-born Chilembe was allegedly poached through Durandt’s former client, Jody Solomon, as part of the plot to return him to the GGP stable.

“Solomon was a client in my executive gym, and Chilembe was her personal trainer.

“They got very close; she became his manager and influenced him to leave.”

But how did Berman enter the fray?

“Berman used to train in my executive gym and Solomon became close with him too. Solomon had some legal problems and needed Berman to help her.”

According to Durandt, Chilembe is still contracted to him until December 2011.

Daniel Bruwer
Despite also still being contracted to Durandt, Bruwer left the trainer after Berman, Jeff Ellis and Brian Mitchell allegedly launched a hostile takeover.

“He signed a two-year contract in May,” Durandt said.

In a bid to have the SA light heavyweight champion return to GGP, Mitchell and Ellis took over as co-managers.

Harold Volbrecht was installed as Bruwer’s trainer.

Durandt said he could not release Bruwer without a fight.

“I am not prepared to release ­Bruwer from his contractual obligation, because he was built by me from day one.”

Zolani Tete
According to Durandt, Tete received R6?000 a month as part of his Converse sponsorship.

“Tete effectively took money from the sponsors for seven months without giving nothing in return.

“He lived comfortably in a ­Norwood apartment at my expense.”

Durandt was further infuriated by Tete’s management claiming the fighter did not receive medical ­attention after being knocked down by a taxi while doing road work.

“He was taken to hospital by Osborne Machimana and Leslie ­Sekotswe.

“I was in East London for McBute Sinyabi’s fight.”

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