by Ronnie Nathanielsz
Newly crowned IBF super bantamweight champion Jeffrey Mathebula’s handler, well known South African promoter Branco Milenkovic has confirmed he’s been talking to Top Rank’s Carl Moretti about a possible July 21 unification title fight against WBO champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire.
Milenkovic told BoxingScene.com/Manila Standard that Mathebula was one of his four IBF champions and they are keenly looking forward to fighting Donaire.
Branco noted that Mathebula will be his second fighter to face Donaire after current IBF flyweight champion Moruti Mthalane lost by a 6th round TKO after the referee stopped the fight due to Mathalane suffering a bad cut and a bloodied nose.
Milenkovic said that “based on Moruti’s performance against Donaire without doubt Jeffrey will have a better chance as he is bigger and stronger” than Mthalane.
He said this will be Mathebula’s second attempt to unify the title having dropped a split decision in an unification title bout against Celestino Caballero in Panama which he claimed was a “robbery” and the media in Panama “ crucified the officials.”
At the same time Milenkovic downplayed the value of a title defense by Donaire against former world champion Cristian Mijares saying “No disrespect to Mijares, but in my opinion his best days are past. While he is fighting now for some kind of “silver” international title, Jeffrey is a legitimate IBF Champion.”
Tags: Nonito Donaire , Jeffrey Mathebula