Advertisement
Advertisement

Rodney Berman Talks Ryno Liebenberg, Thabo Sonjica

Johannesburg – Golden Gloves promoter Rodney Berman says he will keep faith with wayward Thabo Sonjica, despite the East London-based fighter weighing in 2kgs [4.4-pounds] over the junior featherweight limit and surrendering his IBO title before completing a clear-cut points victory over Filipino Roli Gasca at Emperors Palace on Saturday night.

“Naturally, the initial response was to feel a little angry and frustrated that a boxer could act in such an unprofessional manner and not only affect the value of the [event], but also damage his own future,” Berman said.

“However, Sonjica is still a youngster in boxing terms and relatively inexperienced. But he is immensely talented and could have a great future if handled properly and brought to maturity in the right manner.”

Berman said at the root of the problem was the fact that the rangy Sonjica's body make-up suggested he should be competing in a higher weight division than that of junior featherweight.

“In fact I think his height warrants him going up two weight divisions and not one, ultimately making his mark in the junior lightweight division. It's a loss surrendering the IBO title, but there is a lot of time for him to win titles with his immense natural talent and growing maturity and experience.”

Berman also raved over the performance of Rayno Liebenberg, beating Russian Denis Grachev for the WBC light-heavyweight silver title on Saturday, in a bruising, no-holds-barred 12 round battle, in spite of suffering an ugly cut over his right eye in only the first round.

“The early setback only motivated Rayno to fight with greater determination and resolution and shrug off the bleeding that continued right through the fight.

“On this display, he is destined to become South African boxing's own version of Rocky and join the top crowd pleasers this country has produced.”

Sonjica, for his part, must have felt the pain of the bitter-sweet victory after the three judges made him a 117-109, 116-109 and 116-109 winner in a curious, but at times absorbing, confrontation in which both boxers hit the canvas for counts of eight.

The over-powered and out-matched Gasca was a good head shorter than Sonjica and never looked capable of taking over the mantle of IBO junior featherweight champion.

Liebenberg extended his unbeaten record to 16 victories, but it was hardly by the margin the judges suggested, scoring him 120-108, 117-111 and 116-112.

The Krugersdorp boxer himself afterwards admitted it had been a much closer and tougher contest.

Tags: Ryno Liebenberg image  
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Post a Comment - View More User Comments (0)
Top Headlines McGuigan: Frampton Has Been After Santa Cruz Since 2013 Canelo Smiles: I Ran From Golovkin? He's Fought NOBODY! Santa Cruz vs. Russell Much Better Fight; Both Want Selby Next Frank Warren: Frampton Left 122 With Rigondeaux Clash Marquez Has No Regrets Over Cotto Position, Retirement Near Adonis Stevenson With Vicious Knockout of Williams in Four Adonis Stevenson vs. Thomas Williams: LIVE BScene Scorecard Ruslan Provodnikov Meets With Promoter, Return is Anticipated Eleider Alvarez Beats Robbie Berridge, On Course For Stevenson Frampton’s Promoter: Santa Cruz is Carl’s Toughest Fight Yet Keith Thurman vs. Danny Garcia Potentially in Early 2017 Adonis Stevenson vs. Thomas Williams - CompuBox Review Photos/Weights: Luis Nery vs. David Sanchez in Tijuana Photos/Weights: Antonio Orozco vs. Lopez, Joseph Diaz vs. Proa Carl Frampton After the Scales: This Was Easy and I Feel Great SHO VP: Wilder vs. Joshua in Late 2017, Could Be Pay-Per-View Photos: Mikey Garcia vs. Rojas Malignaggi-Bracero Battle Ready Photos: Frampton, Santa Cruz Ready For War at Barclays Center Video: Frampton Fans in Force at Weighin For Leo Santa Cruz Antonio Gutierrez vs. Jorge Melendez, LA Fight Club on 9/2 Juan Carlos Camacho Jr. Goes Pro With Miguel Cotto Thomas Williams: TKO Loss To Gabriel Campillo Doesn’t Define Me Chisora Unlikely To Land Whyte, Trying To Get Helenius Rematch Weights From Brooklyn: Santa Cruz 125.4, Frampton 125 Frampton To Santa Cruz: I'll Be The Bigger Man on Fight Night Adrien Broner's Request For Early Release From Jail is Denied Tyson Fury To Take On UKAD Over Drug Test Results Adonis Stevenson-Thomas Williams: Pre-Fight Report Card Lara's Manager on The Possibility of Facing Gennady Golovkin Roach: Me and Pacquiao Remain in Boxing To Get Mayweather Verdejo's Manager Says Flanagan Clash Possible For November Frank Warren on Crawford: Best American in a Long Time Amir Khan: I'd Need 6 Months of MMA Training For McGregor MGM Liverpool Launches, Will Promote October Show Leo Santa Cruz Motivated To Make Frampton Taste First Defeat Dennis Ceylan vs. Ryan Walsh For Euro Crown on October 15 Marquez's Coach: Estrada, Ramirez Best in Mexico - NOT Canelo Nacho Praises Marquez For Rejecting Cotto's Weight Demand Christian Hammer vs. Timur Stark Set For September 17 Wilcox dominant, Miljas impresses at Toronto boxing show
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement