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 Acelino Freitas Set To Return, Faces Martinez in November Josh Warrington vs. Dennis Ceylan - LIVE Results From Leeds Photos: Hassan N'Dam, Ryota Murata Ready For Rematch Battle Demetrius Andrade's Promoter Details Many Options at 160 Ryan Burnett-Zhanat Zhakiyanov: Pre-Unification Report Card Arum: Murata Will Be On Pound-For-Pound Lists By End of 2018 Schaefer Says Ringstar is Ahead of The Golden Boy Curve in Year 1 Anthony Joshua: 'Desperate' Wilder Needs Our Fight More Than Me Photos: Heather Hardy Stopped in a Bloodbath on Bellator Card Photos: Joe Joyce, Michael Page Debut - Stop Opponents To Win Ricky Hatton Believes Burnett vs. Zhakiyanov is 50-50 Fight James Metcalf: After Damon Jones, I'm Ready For Anyone Coldwell Explains: Amir Khan's Career is Going Down The Toilet! Hatton Says Claims of Wild Lifestyle During Career Were Overblown Jermell Charlo: I Want Any Champion Next - Canelo, Golovkin Too Isaac Zarate, Christian Esquivel Ends in Technical Draw Sakio Bika, Tim Tszyu Pumped For Their Bouts in Sydney Miguel Montano Gets Revenge, Decisions Carlos Ruiz Over Ten Is Thurman The Forgotten Man On The Pound For Pound List? Joshua: I'll Fight Wilder Next Year, But Might Not Happen Next Heather Hardy a Bloody Mess, Gets Stopped in MMA Bout Photo: Karim Mayfield vs. Miguel Dumas - Official Weights David Haye Wants Joe Joyce vs. Sam Sexton For British Title Next Kautondokwa Headlines Card in Windhoek, Namibia Jaron Ennis, Adam Daranyi Pick Up Knockout Wins in Virginia Miguel Cotto vs. Sadam Ali Lands on BoxNation Joshua: Wilder Needs to Stop Crying, Feeling Sorry for Himself Toka Kahn-Clary Stops David Berna in Two Rounds Photos: Gassiev, Wlodarczyk - On Weight, Ready For WBSS Battle Joe Joyce Makes Pro Debut, Stops Ian Lewison in Eight Round Luis Ortiz Suspended By WBA, No Longer Mandatory To Joshua Photos: Corrales Very Overweight: Machado, Andrade, Fox Ready Photos: Pedro Campa vs. Carlos Jimenez - Official Weights Golovkin's Coach To Charlo: You KO'd a Cripple, Wait Your Turn! Photos: Braekhus Prepared For Lauren Kiss Attempt at Weigh-In Isaac Zarate Will Aim To Impress Against Christian Esquivel Rob Brant: I'm Confident I'll Win Entire World Boxing Super Series Barrett: When I get in the ring I turn from a goldfish into a shark! Photos: Ryan Burnett, Zhanat Zhakiyanov - Ready For Unification David Benavidez on What He Learned From Gennady Golovkin
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement