Tete raring to bring brother’s belt home

ACTION STATIONS Makazole Tete wants to claim the IBF super flyweight title, which used to belong to his brother.  Picture: Themba Makofane
ACTION STATIONS Makazole Tete wants to claim the IBF super flyweight title, which used to belong to his brother. Picture: Themba Makofane

Makazole “The Professor” Tete can’t wait to challenge Puerto Rican McJoe Arroyo for the International Boxing Federation (IBF) super flyweight title.

The idea, he says, is to match the accomplishment of his younger brother Zolani “Last Born” Tete, who won the then vacant super flyweight title by beating Japanese pugilist Teiru Kinoshita on points in Kobe, Japan, two years ago.

Last Born was supposed to make a mandatory defence against Arroyo, but relinquished his belt after deciding that the purse was not viable.

Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions was the only bidder with $25 000 (R314 000 at the time) at the IBF’s offices in New Jersey, US, last year.

The Professor believes he has what it takes to dethrone the Puerto Rican and bring the IBF championship belt back home to Mdantsane, Eastern Cape.

He raised his ring profile two weeks ago by stopping Filipino Raymond Tabugon in the fifth round at East London’s Orient Theatre
to win the intercontinental version of the IBF superflyweight strap.

“I’m ready to meet Arroyo pound for pound. I’ve seen him in action before. He’s a good fighter with great hand speed,” he said.

“His crown belongs to the Tete family and I want to take it back home.”

The Professor has compiled a record of 15 wins, one defeat and two draws.

His sole loss came at the hands of former strawweight title-holder Gideon Buthelezi via a unanimous points decision for the International Boxing Organisation super flyweight diadem at the Orient Theatre in December.

Last Born is backing his elder brother to relieve Arroyo of the belt.

“I believe Arroyo got the title on a silver platter as he didn’t have to fight for it. My brother will beat him hands down. Let the fight take place,” he said.

Arroyo is set to put his championship on the line against Filipino fighter Jerwin Ancajas at the Bacoor Coliseum in the Philippines on September 3.

The elder Tete’s promoter, Ayanda Matiti of Xaba Boxing Promotions, said negotiations for a title bout were under way.

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