by Ronnie Nathanielsz
Edrin “The Sting” Dapudong who ,lost nhis IBO super flyweight title to Lwandile Sithyatha at the International Convention Center in East London, South Africa on Saturday was promised a rematch after he lost his title to the South African.
Dapudong’s manager Manny Pinol claimed in an email to the Manila Standard/Viva Sports that the camp of Sythyatha had “agreed in principle to a rematch to be held in Davao City before the end of the year.”
Pinol said he and Sithyatha’s promoter Ayanda Matiti shook hands in the presence of IBO vice president for Asia and Africa Len Hunt.
The rematch clause was stipulated in the contract which was signed reportedly before Dapudong agreed to travel to South Africa.
However, the Standard has been informed that when Dapudong fought Gideon Buthelezi for the title in a rematch that the Filipino won, Pinol had given the promoter three options and that they inserted the rematch clause just in case Sithyatha lost.
Pinol in his report on the title fight said the fear of losing by decision prompted Dapudong to go after the challenger in search of a knockout while Sithyatha backpedaled throughout the fight to snatch a split decision.
South African judge Andile Matika scored the fight for Dapudong 115-113 but Waleska Roldan of Puerto Rico and Eddie Pappoe of Ghana who replaced Bruce McTavish after Pinol objected to the last minute appointment of a South African referee, compelling the promoter to have the internationally respected McTavish as referee.
Apparently determined to score a knockout Dapudong was the aggressor and this enabled Sithyatha to “connect several times” according to Pinol while trainer Nonoy Neri said the split decision loss meant there was nothing to be ashamed of.
Well known boxing writer Ron Jackson of Super Sports reported that Dapudong “did not have enough power to knock the South African down in a fight that turned out to be a test forn the judges.”
Jackson said Sithyatha “took the opportunity to show off his own skills and hand speed although his defense let him down and allowed the Filipino to keep scoring throughout.”
Sithyatha lost his mouthpiece twice in round six under the pressure from Dapudong.
However, Sithyatha used his reach advantage well and according to Jackson cashed in, in the eighth round as Dapudong seemed to lose his structure somewhat.”
Jackson reported that Sithyatha was confident enough to do some showboating in the final round.
Another report on the fight said Sithyatha’s “extra strength and lateral movement” provided the edge.
With the win Sithyatha improved to 18-2-1 with 7 knockouts while Dapudong dropped to 29-6 with 17 knockouts.