By Ron Jackson
Simphiwe Khonco returns to action after being inactive for more than 13 months when he defends the IBO minmumweight belt against Filipino, Toto Landero in Umtata on Sunday, July 22. It is quite sad that the talented Khonco (18-5, 7 KOs) who will be 32-years-old on June 26 has been inactive since June 10 last year. He won the IBO belt in June 2016 and has made successful defenses against Nkosinathi Joyi and Lito Dante, both on points.
Landero, 22, who has a record of 10-2-2, 2 KOs, is ranked at number eight by the IBO. His only two losses came against Joey Canoy (11-2-1) in September 2016 on a sixth round stoppage, and in his most recent fight in March this year against Thammanoon Niyomtrong (16-0) who beat him on unanimous 12 round points decision in defense of the WBA minimumweight belt.
This is a must win fight for Khonco as he is ranked at a high number two by the WBC and could challenge the outstanding WBC minimumweight champion Chayaphon Moonsri (alias Wanheng Menayothin) who has a record of 50-0, 18 KOs.