Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

Branco is Confident Malinga Will Beat Leo Santa Cruz

The long wait will finally be over for 32 year-old Vusi “Marvellous” Malinga when he fights Leo Santa Cruz for the vacant IBF bantamweight title at the Home Depot Centre in Los Angeles on June 2.

Malinga beat Michael Domingo 18 months ago in a final eliminator for the IBF title but ongoing promotional and financial haggling over venues and purse money left the South African champing at the bit.

In his own words, he was “getting old” as details for the fight were being ironed out.

On Tuesday, BSP promoter Branco Milenkovic, under whose aegis the South African fights, was able to announce that “the show is finally on the road and Malinga will get his big chance on a star-studded bill in Carson, Los Angeles.”

The major difference, however, since Malinga initially qualified for an IBF title shot in October 2010, is that his opponent will now be Santa Cruz instead of Filipino Alex John Banal.

“Banal has moved on,” said Milenkovic, “and Santa Cruz is the new sensation in the division, with an unbeaten record of 19 wins and a draw from his 20 fights.”

And, to emphasise that Malinga has a daunting task on his hands, the BSP promoter revealed that the explosive Mexican fighter's nickname was “Earthquake” no less.

Milenkovic remained optimistic, however, about securing a fourth IBF champion fighting under his wing – with top South African pound-for-pound straw weight champion, Nkosinathi Joyi; junior featherweight champion Jeffrey Mathebula and flyweight title holder Moruti Mthalane all in the BSP stable and rated by the authoritative Ring Magazine among the top 10 boxers in the world in their respective divisions.

Joyi, in fact, is the only South African currently rated by Ring Magazine as the world's number one in his division.

Milenkovic pointed out that most of his champions had started out as underdogs before becoming IBF champions and then going on to defy the odds.

“And Malinga is quite capable of doing the same thing,” Milenkovic said.

Malinga would have to overcome the effect of his long inactivity while waiting for his title opportunity – and against a tearaway fighter like Santa Cruz it would not be easy.

The BSP promoter said the June 2 tournament in Los Angeles was being promoted by an associate organisation and heading the star-studded bill was the high-profiled Austin “No Doubt” Trout's defence of his WBA super welterweight title against Delvin Rodriguez.

“The tournament as a whole will be a major attraction in the United States and is already receiving considerable exposure,” said Milenkovic.

“It is providing Malinga with a wonderful opportunity of making a name for himself on the international scene.”

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Post a Comment - View More User Comments (0)
Top Headlines Team Rigondeaux: Lomachenko Our Main Target, Ball in His Court! Marquez Seriously Doubts Horn is Capable of a Pacquiao KO Photos: Joe Smith Getting in Top Form For Sullivan Barrera Fortune Tears Apart Horn: He's Just an Opponent, No Dog in Him Photos: Alexander Povetkin Putting in Work For Rudenko Randall Bailey Backs Pacquiao: I've Not Seen Special Factor in Horn Ivan Dychko, Olympic Medal Winner, Decides To Go Pro Photos: Robert Easter, Denis Shafikov - Go Face To Face Victor Ortiz vs. Saul Corral Finalized - PBC on FS1, July 30 Pacquiao: Canelo-GGG is Real Fight, Mayweather-McGregor is Not Miguel Flores vs. Chris Avalos - PBC on FS1, July 18 Roach Laughs at Horn's Record: Who The F*** is Randall Bailey? Photos: Artur Szpilka, Adam Kowancki - Go Face To Face Billy Joe Saunders Drops Adam Booth, Hires Dominic Ingle Taras Shelestyuk Training Hard With Joel Diaz For Return Rey Vargas vs. Ronny Rios Added To Cotto-Kamegai Joshua-Klitschko II - Frontrunner is Las Vegas, Says Hearn Horn's Trainer: Brutal KO Loss to Marquez 'Haunts' Pacquiao Ward-Kovalev Rematch Replay Peaked at 947K Viewers on HBO Claressa Shields vs. Nikki Adler For WBC Title, August 4 on ShoBox De La Hoya: I Actually Hope Mayweather-McGregor is Good Fight Rigondeaux: I'll Sign Contract For Magdaleno Faster Than UPS! Easter: I'll Make it Look Easy and Will Be First To KO Shafikov Mikey Garcia: I'd Be 'A Huge Star in Boxing' If Not for Long Layoff Horn, Promoter Slam Pacquiao For Texting During Entire Presser An Opportunity for Jerwin Ancajas To Impress on Pacquiao Card UK News: Scott Fitzgerald, Ryan Burnett, Ted Cheeseman Roach Warns Horn: This is Going To Be a Short and Sweet KO! Hassan N’Dam vs. Ryota Murata Rematch - Purse Bid on July 7 Jamie Cox, Erik Skoglund Join World Boxing Super Series WBC Prez Smiles To Canelo: We Will Still Sanction Golovkin Bout! Romero Duno Heads To United States To Train For Next Fight Photos: Pacquiao, Horn - Go Face To Face at Final Presser! Ryan Martin: Time To Prove That I'm a Real Deal Fighter Giovanni Santillan is Aiming To Knock Sammy Valentin Out Hopkins on GGG: There Will Be Blood, Mostly on Canelo's Shorts Miguel Cruz Drops Alex Martin Twice, Wins Decision in Rematch Nacho Believes Golden Boy Won't Allow Cotto-Marquez Clash Abel Sanchez: Shafikov Has "Extremely Tough" Task With Easter Horn: I Like Being Told I Stand No Chance Against Pacquiao
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement