By Mesuli Zifo
The camp of WBA featherweight champion Simpiwe Vetyeka is not buying the favorite tag given to the South African boxer ahead of his title defense against Filipino Donito Donaire in their clash scheduled for May 31 in Macau.
Fight promoter Bob Arum was recently quoted as saying Vetyeka would enter the bout as a favorite following his upset six rounds stoppage of previously unbeaten Indonesian Chris John in Australia last December.
The fight will be held at the Cotai Arena, Venetian Resort in Macao.
While dismissing his charge as a favorite, Vetyeka's manager Andile Sidinile is however confident of beating Donaire, even predicting another shocking stoppage win.
“Look, I think uncle Bob is playing mind games by installing us as favorites but Vetyeka will not only beat Donaire he might even stop him,” he said.
Sidinile argued that by listing Vetyeka (26-2, 16 KOs) as a favorite, Arum wants to rob his charge of his victory being described as an upset.
“Bob wants to say ah I told you that Vetyeka was going win so it is not an upset.”
Sidinile who predicted a similar win for Vetyeka over John, insisted that Donaire (32-2, 21 KOs) was not a fully fledged featherweight like his boxer.
The Filipino Flash has fought just once in the division when he came from behind to score a ninth round stoppage of nemeses Vic Darchinyan in Texas, US last November.
“Both Donaire and Darchinyan are not fully fledged featherweights and Donaire will find out just how it is to face a real featherweight against Vetyeka.
“Furthermore Vetyeka is taller than Donaire and we will use that to our advantage.”
Vetyeka is training hard for the fight under the watchful eye of former IBF junior featherweight champion Vuyani Bungu and former SA Amateur Olympic Boxing Team coach Boy Boy Mpulampula who orchestrated John's defeat.
The 33-year-old Vetyeka has lined up big sparring partners including former world lightweight title challenge Ali Funeka who lost to overweight Nate Campbell and Joan Guzman in IBF title challenges.
Funeka has been joined by another big lightweight boxer and hard hitting Vusumzi Bokolo as well as reigning SA junior welterweight champion Mzolisi Yoyo.
Sidinile has explained that the choice of such sparring partners is meant to help Vetyela bully Donaire in the ring.
“We want Vetyeka to bulldoze Donaire and these sparring partners will help Vetyeka to do just that especially against a smaller and short boxer like Donaire.”
To help Vetyeka with speed, unbeaten flyweight MakazoleTete has also been roped in.
The Vetyeka camp will leave for Macau on May 19th.