NELSON Mandela Bay boxing trainer Caiphus Ntante is livid about the manner in which his protegé, the South African (SA) Junior Lightweight Champion Nozipho Bell was overlooked in the Boxing South Africa (BSA) Awards.
Aimed at recognising and celebrating excellence in the sport, the awards, which took place at the ICC in Durban on Friday, January 27, Ntante said, proved just how BSA authorities disregarded the resurgence of boxing in the city in favour of more prominent areas like Gauteng and KwaZulu Natal.
Ntante of Walmer Township asked, “Why was (Nozipho) Bell not nominated in the Female Boxer of the Year Category?”
Nominations closed on November 2 and BSA was looking at the activity in the 2016 Calender year.
Bukiwe Nonina (Limpopo), Leighandre Jeggels (Western Cape) and East London’s Sharadene Fortuin made it to the final three. Ntante is adamant that Bell belonged in the list.
“In March 2016, (Nozipho) Bell beat Western Cape’s Zizipho Khoza in an All-women boxing tournament in Durban. She then beat SA Lightweight champion Ndobayini Kolosa on points here and then wrestled the SA title from Nomampondomise Xotyeni to close the year. What is more significant than that?” asked Ntante. Nominations were, however, not the prerogative of BSA, but the public, Express reminded Ntante.
Quoted in Sowetan, BSA Chief Executive Tsholofelo Lejaka said, “Everything regarding the awards was explained in the (BSA) rule book.” He said the rule book and nomination forms were clearly accessible on their webpage: www.boxing.co.za and through the provincial managers.
“The information was not sent out to the public but to few individuals who have email addresses and smart phones. Those who had to make the call bypassed us,” charged Ntante.
“We won’t be discouraged, however, we’ll continue doing our best in search of world honours. There are promoters talking to us about an opportunity to fight against an overseas opponent soon. We’ll make announcements as soon as we sign on the dotted lines,” said Ntante who congratulated Nthabiseng Didi of Motherwell on her nomination as the Promising Female Boxer of the Year.