Komanisi no-show catches all by surprise

Finally talented yet fight starved Lusanda Komanisi is returning to the ring when he takes on tough Filipino Jhack Tepora at Orient Theatre on Friday.

OUR MAN’S READY: Filipino Jhack Tepora, centre, together with trainer, Julius Junco and manager Jelliper Junco appeared ready for the fight at the pre-medicals yesterday. Picture: SINO MAJANGAZA

However, there were concerns when Komanisi did not pitch up for the premedical of the fight at Mdantsane Motion Fitness yesterday fuelling perceptions that he may be overweight.

This as he could not make the featherweight limit in his last fight when he beat Tello Dithebe.

The fight will be contested in the featherweight division with promoter Ayanda Matiti of Xaba Promotions and Events (XPE) having negotiated for the WBO regional belt to be at stake.

Several calls by Matiti for Komanisi to come to the premedical proved futile as the boxer’S cellphone was off.

Komanisi will be making a ring return under Matiti’s promotion which paved his professional debut way back before their relationship soured along the way.

After hopping from one stable to the other, the hard-punching boxer is confident of finally accelerating his march towards a world title shot.

However, he will not have it easy against the Filipino who arrived in the country on Monday morning to underline his determination to return home with his unbeaten fight record intact.

Tepora, who is yet to taste a defeat in 20 bouts scoring 15 knockouts, seemed ready at the premedical yesterday.

This makes him by far the most dangerous opponent Komanisi has ever fought in all his 24 bouts with 18 knockouts.

Judging by the high knockout ratio possessed by the two boxers, the fight will not likely see the final round.

XPE boss Ayanda Matiti who does not shy away from putting his boxers in tough fights said Komanisi was on the fast lane to make up for lost time.

“Komanisi is a world-class boxer and what has been happening with him is travesty of justice,” said Matiti.

“Now we will have to make sure that he engages in bouts against formidable opponents to accelerate his title conquest.”

At 27, Komanisi is still capable of making the best of his career.

The WBO Intercontinental title conquest will help catapult him into the title mix against reigning champion Oscar Valdez.

But the threat posed by Tepora should not be underestimated especially given the gutsy display of Filipino boxers at international level.

Matiti has a first-hand experience on that assertion as he brought an unheralded Filipino Jason Sultan for his other charge Makazole Tete in December last year.

Sultan stopped Tete in the second round to start his brilliant run which saw him beating homeboy Johnriel Casmero in an IBF junior-bantamweight title eliminator.

“We know of the danger posed by Filipino boxers but we believe that Komanisi has to beat these kind of boxers if he wants to challenge for a world title.”