Botswana is on the verge of its own boxing history as two local boxers are set to fight for the vacant World Boxing Federation (WBF) International Super Bantamweight belt.
Whoever wins the fight between Tshepang ‘Gear Box’ Babui and Onkarabile ‘Scara’ Mothibedi is guaranteed to become the first Motswana professional boxing champion.
The historic box and dine black tie event is organized by Scud Missile Boxing Promotions, in conjunction with the WBF.
For Babui, this will be a second shot at the title which he lost to South Africa’s Tholumusa Ngema in May last year.
Whereas this will be Babui’s redemption fight, for his opponent, Mothibedi, this will be an opportunity to test his title mettle.
According to fight promoter Thuso Khubamang, the two locals won the opportunity to fight for the title after it was stripped from Ngema for failing to defend it.
“We are very pleased with the unfolding of events in our sport, the world is watching Botswana and the marvelous talent it has. Our aim is to fight with elite champions all over the world and that will be a reality one day,” Khubamang said.
The organisers believe the title fight will showcase to the world the potential and capability of Batswana in the boxing ring.
For the two, it is certain one will remain with the title being the first ever Motswana to hold a title belt.
With both boxers and their camps intent on making history, blood, sweat and tears will be expected in a fight which many people believe will be won from the two boxers’ corners.
Both fighters and their corners know each other very well as Mothibedi was Babui’s sparring partner when the latter was preparing for his title fight against Ngema last year.
As the most experienced of the two, Babui goes into the fight as a favorite but this may not count for much against Mothibedi who is said to be keen to have the belt around his waist.
Standing at just 1.61m in height and with a reach of 165cm, Babui, who is the shortest of the two, will have to use his experience and aggression to control the fight if he is to win the title.
On the other hand, Mothibedi, who stands at 1.80m and has a reach of 185cm will have to find a way to keep Babui at bay and stop him from landing any telling punches.
Mothibedi will have to more or less adopt the same tactics used by Ngema against Babui and avoid infighting.
Babui on the other hand will have to get as close as possible to Mothibedi and force him into an infight, where his explosive power and aggression can work for him.
Meanwhile, in the undercard bouts, all eyes will be on the lightweight division fight between Kgotla ‘Bang Bang’ Baeti and Tshepiso ‘Kurupt’ Mokgadi.
The fight will mark a return to the ring for the man known as ‘Bang Bang’ Baeti after many years in the wilderness.
By far the country’s most experienced fighter, Baeti boasts an impressive professional record of 22 fights with 19 wins, 2 losses and a single draw. Of his 19 wins, 16 came through knockouts.
For Mokgadi, who is an orthodox fighter, the fight against Baeti, who is a southpaw will be a test of his ring smarts. The jury will be out to see if Mokgadi can stand Baeti’s bang power which has seen many fighters hit the canvass on their backside.
Mokgadi is the least experienced of the two boxers and has a professional record of 6 fights with 4 wins, 1 draw and a loss.