By Mesuli Zifo
After being subjected to endless speculation following his career best win over Indonesian legend Chris John, South Africa's Simpiwe Vetyeka's next fight has taken a clear direction with the news that he will defend his WBA/IBO featherweight crowns against Nonito Donaire in Macau, China on May 10.
The fight will be staged by Top Rank and while the contracts are yet to be signed, it looks like a done deal.
“Yes we have accepted Top Rank's terms and next week we will be flying to the US to sign the contracts,”confirmed Vetyeka's manager Andile Sidinile.
Donaire (32-2, 21 KOs) becomes the fifth fighter lining up to face Vetyeka (26-2, 16 KOs) who has become some sort of an overnight sensation since inflicting the first professional loss on John when he forced him to quit in the sixth round in Australia last December.
The 33-year old South African was first scheduled to face John in a rematch due to the rematch clause in their contract, but John announced his retirement.
Then the WBA mandated him to face Jamaican Nicholas Walters who is the regular champion in the division.
But that fight fell off with Japanese Akifumi Shimoda emerging as a likely foe in Macau next weekend.
For unknown reasons that fight also fell off the radar and now Donaire is said to be the boxer expected to be on the opposite corner when Vetyeka makes the maiden defense of his WBA crown.
However there was also a mention of Vetyeka facing Abner Mares on the undercard of Floyd Mayweather's expected return on May 3.
While Sidinile declined to confirm, sources have revealed that Golden Boy Promotion's Richard Schaefer contacted the camp this week to try to make the fight.
It is reported that the Vetyeka camp was keen on fighting on Mayweather's card in light of the worldwide exposure he would have received but when Schaefer delayed to come up with an offer, Donaire's deal was taken.
Sidinile confirmed that former IBF junior featherweight champion Vuyani Bungu and BoyBoy Mpulampula will train Vetyeka for the Donaire fight.
Mpulampula was recently fired as a chief trainer of former IBF and IBO minimumweight champion Nkosinathi Joyi before Joyi's shocking third round knock-out defeat by Filipino journeyman Rey Loreto in Monaco a fortnight ago.
The pair was in Vetyeka's corner when he stunned John in his last fight in Australia.
Vetyeka will become the third South African fighter Donaire has faced, with the Filipino Flash having stopped Moruti Mthalane in six rounds for the IBF flyweight crown way back in 2008 in Las Vegas.
The 31-year-old Filipino also beat Jeffrey Mathebula on points when they clashed for the WBO/IBF junior featherweight title unification in California in 2012 when Mathebula suffered a broken jaw.
Coincidentally both Mthalane and Mathebula are former stablemates of Vetyeka.
But Sidinile believes Donaire's good run against South African fighters will come to an end on May 10.
“If people thought that Vetyeka's beating of John was an upset wait until he beats Donaire on May 10,” he said.