Ntsele faces his bogeyman

2011-12-10 20:32

Despite a recent tragedy, national flyweight champion Doctor Ntsele could bounce back and perform at peak levels when he defends his title against Mkholisi Bhonxa.

Ntsele’s previous title challenger Anele Makwelo died three months ago after losing in a technical knockout in the 10th round.

According to Yoga Coopoo, an associate professor in the department of sport and movement at the University of Johannesburg, this may be apparent in Ntsele’s next fight.

The learned professor’s assertions will indeed be tested in the fight at Uitenhage Indoor Sports Centre on Sunday.

Makwelo, who made his unsuccessful title bid in Bloemfontein, passed away at Universitas Hospital after his fateful battle.

Ntsele said he had the ability to recover from the disaster because what happened was “an accident that could happen anywhere, anyhow”.

Coopoo, whose discipline includes sports psychology, said Ntsele’s attitude could be key in his recuperation.

He said: “It sounds like Ntsele’s belief signifies that he is a realist, who is psychologically tough and may be unaffected in his next fight.”

But he emphasised that the boxer’s gradual return to mental strength would be transitory if he did not engage in counselling in a serious manner.

“The fighter may be awakened to reality during the festive season, with consequent negative affects if he ignores counselling.”

Asked how counselling could be what the doctor prescribed, the professor pointed out that sessions would help Ntsele cope with being in the boxing ring.

“He needs behaviour therapy that will teach him how to adapt to the tragedy, relax and transform his thinking,” he said.

Ntsele’s mentor Lehlohonolo “Hands of Stone” Ledwaba stressed that his charge had assured him that he was strong, and “counselling was unnecessary”.

Meanwhile the champion’s upcoming adversary, Bhonxa, laughed when asked if he was not intimidated at the thought of facing Ntsele, taking into account the outcome of his last fight.

Bhonxa said: “What happened does not scare me. I have been longing for the opportunity to face a challenge.”

Brian Mitchell, among other boxers, suffered the same fate 26 years ago when his opponent, Jacob Morake, died after their national junior lightweight title fight at Sun City.

However, Mitchell subsequently became the first local to successfully defend a world title 12 times. Two-time world champion Mitchell said Ntsele should focus on his career, rather than the recent setback.

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
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

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


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.


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.