Johannesburg - While most boxers took a well-deserved break during the festive season, three of the country’s world champions – Noni “She Bee Stinging” Tenge, Bukiwe “Anaconda” Nonina and Unathi “Showtime” Myekeni – were preparing to defend their World Boxing Federation (WBF) titles.
Tenge is the super welterweight champion, while Nonina and Myekeni are at the top of the bantamweight and featherweight classes, respectively.
Tenge won the belt in March when she beat Hungarian Szilvia Szabados by a unanimous points decision at the Durban International Convention Centre.
She hopes to keep her title when she steps into the ring against an American opponent in a bout that is set to take place in the US next month.
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In September, she defended her title against Mapule Ngubane, who she outpointed at the Memorial and Recreation Centre in Kagiso, Mogale City.
“I didn’t have much time to enjoy the holidays as I was at the gym preparing for my next fight,” said Tenge.
“I hope to sign a contract with an international promoter to get this match off the ground".
Tenge, who is from Mdantsane in the Eastern Cape, has a record of 18 wins, one defeat and a draw from 20 outings.
She said she wanted to make the most of this year by adding the International Boxing Federation diadem to her collection.
Nonina is also hoping to keep her WBF title next month.
“I only took a break during Christmas week. After that, it was back to training.
“I might have to defend my title against an opponent from abroad,” she said.
Nonina has amassed 12 victories, three defeats and a draw in 16 bouts.
“My goal is to make three more WBF defences. That would be a huge milestone".
Her last defence was a majority decision victory over Matshidiso Mokebisi at the Ferdi Meyer Hall in Welkom, Free State, in October.
Myekeni, who also comes from the Eastern Cape, said she was working hard to prepare for her fight in March.
“There are plans in place for me to be matched against a top local contender. I hope to have a great year with many successful defences,” she said.
Myekeni has had 11 victories, four defeats and one draw in 16 fights.
Her sister is former World Boxing Council International flyweight champion Mhikiza “Showtime” Myekeni.