International Boxing Organization
International Boxing Organization


Murderous-punching South African set for IBO defence against tough Gasca; still predicts another KO

On August 9th at the Emperor's Palace, Gauteng, South Africa, IBO super-bantamweight champion Thabo Sonjica takes the next step to what he hopes will be eventual superstardom. A talented southpaw who is huge at the 122lb weight limit, the power-punching Sonjica is in the form of his life and insists he is destined for the very top.

The 5'9" puncher has called out everyone from Carl Frampton to Guillermo Rigondeaux since becoming IBO champion last year and clearly doesn't lack in self-belief.

Although at first glance those matches would appear absurd one can't easily forget just how much Sonjica has improved in the last 18 months. In that time, "Super Eagle" has captured both the SA and IBO belts and scored some impressive knock-outs. He has also avenged his two defeats to the formidable Macbute Sinyabi, making it third time lucky with a clear decision win last year.

Before world domination though comes Filipino contender Roli Gasca who, at 22-4-1 (6), is certainly no slouch. The fighter known as "Zuma" is still only 25-years-old, a rugged veteran and has never been stopped. It looks a tough match on paper though Sonjica remains certain of victory.

"I'm expecting a tough one as you know that the guy has never been knocked out before" Thabo comments. "We have intensified our training more than before so Roli is in for a good fight and I would be happy if he can manage to last the distance but I doubt it."

"We are training for twelve rounds of boxing but should I see an opportunity to make it a short night trust me I will grab that chance with every effort I have. And let me tell you that he is not the first guy that I have come across who has never been stopped before but I knocked the others out so why not him?"

The IBO champion is currently sparring former three-time world title challenger Ali Funeka as well as another SA lightweight contender in Vusumzi Bokolo. After only one contest in the last year he hopes to be out at least two more times should he get by Gasca next week.

Sonjica has a final message...

"Let me take this opportunity to wish my promoter Mr Mzi Mnguni a speedy recovery from the illness he is having to face and can I also thank Mr Rodney Berman for taking care of me while Mr Mzi cant. Also let me wish the SA team that is taking part in the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow for representing our country. That isn't just because my younger brother Siyabonga is part of that team (in the 56kg class)." In Sonjica's last bout he faced SA bantamweight champion Toto Helebe, a fighter who had never been beaten inside schedule in seventeen previous contests. A well-placed left hand to the body ended that fact in just a single round. Count "Super Eagle" out at your peril...

Livefight would like to send kind regards to Mr Mnguni who is currently in hospital after suffering a stroke.

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