MANILA, Philippines – South African boxer Simpiwe Vetyeka is seeking to bolster his reputation as he targets another upset victory over former world champion Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire in May.
Vetyeka stunned the boxing world when he handed Indonesian legend Chris John the first and only loss of storied career. The South African stopped John in the sixth round of their featherweight bout last November to give the Indonesian his first loss after 48 straight victories.
Vetyeka unified the WBA and IBO featherweight belts, and will defend his titles against Donaire on May 31 at the Venetian Resort in Macau.
In an interview with Joaquin Henson of The Philippine Star, the manager of Vetyeka said they are prepared for what will surely be a difficult fight against one of the best boxers in the world.
“We are ready for Donaire,” said Andile Sidinile. “As Team Vetyeka, we are under no illusion that this is not going to be a very difficult fight.”
“(But) we believe that to be the best, you have to beat the best,” he added.
Vetyeka was a massive underdog against John, and will likely be the underdog against Donaire as well. Sidinile said the South African is highly motivated, however.
“If people thought that the defeat of John was an upset, wait until you see him beat Donaire,” he said.
The bout against Vetyeka will only be Donaire’s second fight as a featherweight after his stoppage victory over Vic Darchinyan in November.
Donaire’s father, Nonito Sr., told Henson that the boxer is “in shape.”
“He’s a very disciplined guy. He’s probably walking around at 130 to 135 pounds, so it shouldn’t be difficult to trim down to 126 or less.”