Khodani “Cena” Nephalama and Ishmael Makhado pose for a picture while trainer Mr John “Smoking Joe” Nemakonde looks on. Photo: Victor Mukwevho.

Local boxers vow to win in Cape Town


Two former traditional musangwe bare-knuckle pugilists, Khodani “Cena” Nephalama and Ishmael Makhado, are set to fly to Cape Town to participate in the Insane Boxing Promotions Tournament. The event will take place at the Pride Fighting Academy on Hope Street in Cape Town next Saturday, 27 April.

Nephalama will face Deon Promnick in the middleweight division, while Makhado will take on Aseko Nocele. They will be joined by their female training mate, Gudani Mudau, who will face Jessica Mouneimne in the bantamweight division.

Mudau was absent from training on Monday for personal matters. However, after an intense training session at the A-Z Boxing Academy in Thohoyandou on Monday, the male fighters assured their fans that they were ready for the tournament and would win their respective fights. Nephalama said, “I am aiming for a win in Cape Town. Ideally, I want to win the fight within the distance, but it will depend on how long he can endure the punishment.”

Makhado added that he hoped to punish his opponent throughout the fight. “My opponent made a grave mistake by agreeing to fight me. Although he has only fought once, securing a knockout victory, I intend to give him a free boxing lesson to show him that he still has much to learn when facing someone like me.”

Despite their confidence, both fighters expressed apprehension about flying for the first time in their lives. “I already have goosebumps thinking about flying, but once I land in Cape Town, I’ll be fine,” said one of the fighters.


Sport - Date: 20 April 2024

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Victor Mukwevho

Victor Mukwevho Ne-vumbani joined the Mirror during it's inception in 1990. He joined the SABC newsroom in 1995, and was known by  listeners as "A u fhedzisela ari". He was a news editor for The Tembisan Newspaper from 2007 to 2015. He rejoined the Limpopo Mirror newspaper in June 2022 as a freelance journalist.

Email: [email protected]