South Africa

Upset SA boxers dump US promoter

2017-03-05 05:58
Slugfest: Lusanda Komanisi (left), who defeated Filipino Roli Gasca in East London in 2015, is no longer fighting under Greg Cohen Promotions. (Stephanie Lloyd)

Johannesburg - Stablemates Lusanda “Schoolboy” Komanisi and Mzuvukile “Old Bones” Magwaca have dumped US boxing promoter Greg Cohen for failing to deliver on his promises.

This followed the stripping of their world title belts in January due to inactivity.

While Komanisi forfeited his International Boxing Organisation (IBO) flyweight crown, Magwaca lost his World Boxing Association (WBA) international featherweight honours.

However, despite Cohen’s failure to organise bouts for them, the two fighters still stuck with him, hoping that something positive would come of it, but with no success.

Declared vacant

Schoolboy and Old Bones, who are managed by Mlandeli Tengimfene of All Winners Boxing Club in East London, teamed up with Greg Cohen Promotions in July and September last year, respectively, with promises that they would get chances to defend their titles under the Manhattan-based consortium.

But nothing happened.

Matters came to a head when they were stripped of their diadems for failing to defend them. According to the rules, a champion must stake his crown nine months after winning it, failing which, his belt will be declared vacant.

Mdantsane-based Schoolboy, who has not fought since defending his IBO crown against Filipino Roli Gasca at the Orient Theatre in East London in 2015, confirmed he was done with Cohen.

He said it was not worth sticking with a promoter who did not deliver on his promise to organise fights for his charges.

“Imagine having last fought in 2015. This is bad and I hope to get a promoter who will take my boxing career seriously.”

Old Bones, who hails from Khayelitsha in the Western Cape, has not tasted any action since winning the WBA international championship in August 2015 by outpointing José Santos González at the Orient Theatre.

Magwaca said: “I’m done fighting under promoter Cohen, who cost me my world title by not getting me fights.”

Current contract

Tengimfene said he asked Cohen to release his charges from the contract.

Tengimfene has confirmed that Greg Cohen Promotions has released the two boxers and that he has the two release letters in his possession.

“I wrote to Greg Cohen Promotions requesting them to release the boxers from their current contract after seeing the promoter could not organise fights for the boxers,” said Tengimfene.

“My duty as a manager is to look for a promoter who will take my boys to where they belong – to the top. It is regrettable that my boys lost their crowns this way.”

Attempts to reach Cohen for comment were unsuccessful as he did not return our message left on his voicemail. He also did not respond to our questions sent to his office via email.

Magwaca will meet Filipino Jason Canoy for the vacant World Boxing Federation bantamweight at the Oliver Tambo Hall in Cape Town on March 31.

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