Boxing safe in his hands

Lebo Mahoko was named the most promising promoter of the year by Boxing South Africa (BSA).  Photo: Supplied
Lebo Mahoko was named the most promising promoter of the year by Boxing South Africa (BSA). Photo: Supplied

Local boxing promoter Lebohang Mahoko has received recognition for his contribution to the sport by Boxing South Africa (BSA).

The boxing federation named him the most promising promoter of the year at its awards ceremony held at the Durban International Convention Centre on Friday (27/01).

Mahoko was one of three finalists that were shortlisted for the category of most promising promoter for the 2016 boxing term.

This Bloemfontein-based promoter was one of the 16 recipients of prestigious awards.

The federation recognises active roleplayers in the sport for their continued contribution to raising the profile of the sport in the country.

At the event, BSA recognised athletes, journalists, managers and officials actively involved in promoting the sport.

Mahoko got recognition for persevering to promote the sport by hosting national and international championships.

Through a series of tournaments, he made it possible for a new breed of aspiring fighters to showcase their talent and launch professional careers.

Mahoko got the idea to stage a boxing tournament in support of the Mangaung African Cultural Festival (Macufe) and he subsequently named the sporting event the Macufe Boxing Extravaganza.

He made strides in raising the profile of boxing and his event attracted reputable fighters. The tournament now features prominently in Macufe’s programme.

Mahoko said he cherished the idea of staging reputable bouts as part of the Macufe boxing project.

Memorable fights include the tragic bout for the South African flyweight title in which Anele Makwelo died after his gruelling battle against the Free State boxer Themba “Doctor” Ntsele in 2011.

“I was devastated and I almost quit boxing, until the family of the late Anele Makwelo convinced me to continue my involvement in the sport. The boxer’s family believes it will be the greatest honour to keep their son’s memory and his spirit alive, to continue with boxing,” said Mahoko.

Mahoko staged another major boxing championship in 2016, in which the Free Stater France Ramabodu challenged Nkululeko “The Bulldog” Mhlongo for the South African and World Boxing Federation (WBF) intercontinental junior middleweight title.

The event also saw Tello Dithebe winning the WBF featherweight title and beating contender Rhoviwa Maema.

Also in the mix was the women’s title bout in which the Free State female boxer Matshediso Mokebe defended her WBF championship title against Melissa Miller from Gauteng.

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