Ravele pays tribute to iconic boxing promoter Mzimasi Mnguni
The wheelchair-bound Mnguni – who has suffered several strokes and has become a pale shadow of the one-time giant – wrote his own name into the history books during a glittering career that produced numerous world champions.
Mnguni was recently honoured by Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula at the SA Sport Awards in Bloemfontein and he was awarded with the Steve Tshwete Lifetime Achievement award.
Ravelle said the 69-year-old successful businessman‚ who owns Mdantsane Hotel‚ has made such an immense contribution to the sport that he cannot be thanked him enough.
“You know Bra Mzi…… we don’t know how to thank him and we can say so many times‚ thank you‚” said Ravele.
“Bra Mzi managed to take boxers from the villages and actually take them out to the world.”
Some of the many credible world champions Mnguni produced at his popular Eyethu Boxing Gym in Mdantsane are Vuyani Bungu‚ Zolani Petelo‚ Welcome Ncita and Mbulelo Botile‚ among many others.
“He didn’t produce one‚ two or three champions but produced more than ten champions from our communities and that on its own is a great achievement‚” she said.
“He kept boxing going within our communities but also motivated a lot of promoters to actually come into the sport.”
“Some of them (promoters) are actually imitating him.
“They really want to be the next Bra Mzi and on that score‚ we would actually want to make him understand that we appreciate the work he is doing.
“When I came in as the chairperson of boxing he was one of the people who welcomed me.
“He was willing to sit down and debate issues‚ give me the background.
“And that’s what you need.
“You need people who are willing to share their experience in order to take the sport forward.”
Top promoter Rodney Ber-man also recently honoured his allegiance with the accomplished trainer and manager.
Berman ventured into boxing in 1977 and he started working with Mnguni in 1988.
They produced their first world champion in 1990 when Mnguni’s charge Ncita won the IBF junior featherweight belt from Fabrice Benichou in Israel. — Tiso Black Star Group Digital
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