Johannesburg - Even in retirement, Cassius “The Hitman” Baloyi, the only boxer in the country to win an unprecedented six world titles, believes no one will be able to match his achievements.
Baloyi won the World Boxing Union (WBU) junior featherweight and the WBU featherweight titles once each, and the International Boxing Organisation junior lightweight and International Boxing Federation (IBF) junior lightweight titles twice each in a professional career spanning 18 years.
No other local fighter has reached such a milestone.
Reaching my achievement
The 43-year-old Baloyi, who hung up his gloves in 2012 after losing to Malcolm Klassen by a unanimous points decision, said he was elated that he held this record.
“Winning six titles is a great achievement. I’m so happy that not a single fighter has equalled my success. In fact, I don’t see any boxer reaching my achievement,” said Baloyi, who was nicknamed after former world champion Thomas “The Hitman” Hearns.
The boxer, who was born in Malamulele, Limpopo and who also goes by the sobriquet “Shy Guy”, has opened a gym in Sandton, north of Johannesburg, with amateurs Sibusiso Mhlakaza, Xolisa Xabanisa and Khutso Mogano as his charges.
“The boys are all from Alexandra. I would like to groom them to become pros like me and win world titles,” said Baloyi, adding that his wish for his three-year-old stable was to see it produce many national and world title holders.
Baloyi regards the fight for the then vacant IBF super featherweight title against Mzonke Fana at Carnival City in 2010 as the toughest fight of his career. He lost by a unanimous points decision.
“This was a tough bout in which both of us threw heavy punches from the word go to appease the fans. I did all I could to beat Fana, but he was too good for me, hence he won.”
Baloyi, who hung up his gloves after notching a record 37 wins, eight defeats and one draw from 46 bouts, said the standard of professional boxing in the country was high.
“Fans can at least watch more fights on TV these days compared with when there was no broadcasting of tournaments,” said Baloyi.