Khayelitsha’s Zumbonge Nocele has risen to stardom in the boxing world, receiving a grand welcome as the new Western Cape flyweight champion.
Just a fortnight ago, Nocele defeated Mossel Bay’s Mbulelo Gubula in an epic 10-round showdown that had fans on the edge of their seats, at the Mossel Bay Indoor Arena.
The fight started with a bang as Nocele dropped Gubula in the first round, showcasing his power and determination. However, Gubula fought back relentlessly, proving his strength and resilience. Nocele, on the other hand, displayed incredible stamina and hunger to win.
In a post-match interview, Nocele humbly acknowledged his opponent’s skill, but he made his ambitions clear – he aspires to become a world champion, and he firmly believes he’s on the right path to achieve it.
“I’m really excited. It has been a long time coming. This past fight was cancelled twice so it had to happen,” said Nocele.
His manager at 9SAI Boxing Club in Khayelitsha, Welsh Macibela, praised the flyweight champion for his character under pressure, noting that the unanimous points decision victory showcased his resilience.
Macibela emphasised Gubula’s strength but mentioned that his tendency to fall, worked to Nocele’s advantage, giving his team hope from the very beginning.
“He (Gubula) is strong. What helped us is that he falls. The fall in the first round gave us hope,” he said.
While Nocele’s victory has undoubtedly brought boxing to the forefront, Macibela also highlighted the growth of women’s boxing in the region. Cape Town, he proudly stated, is making its mark in the boxing world with the rising success of female fighters.
Macibela proudly announced that two of his women fighters, Simamkele Tutsheni and Okuhle Mthi, both former national amateur champions, have secured opponents for their upcoming fights on August 26, in Cape Town.
Macibela said these fighters, through their dedication and skill, are shining examples of how sports can act as a catalyst for hope. They have become role models within their communities, showing that with determination and hard work, one can overcome challenges and achieve great success.
“Boxing is very far right now. We are competing against other good provinces. We still have women’s boxing on the rise and it puts Cape Town on the map.”
Meanwhile, Brice Boxing Academy’s Matthew Geldenhuys made his professional debut with a second round TKO win over Siyamthanda Sam in the four-round welterweight division.
Mbuyiselo Ndukwana lost on points to Bulelani Ngondek in the six rounds light weight bout.
Western Cape junior bantamweight champion, Lwando Mgabi, also from 9Sai Boxing Club, stopped Ayanda Gangqa with a fifth round knockout, during their six round battle, of a Jackie Brice Boxing Promotions showcase, in Mossel Bay.
Of course, with the win, comes more opponents looking to dethrone the new champion. Nocele and his twin brother, Bongani, will fight up in Bloemfontein, on July 28.
“I am now going to fight against a fighter from Bloem with a similar record. My brother and I are excited and ready for them,” said Nocele.