By Ron Jackson
In possibly the best performance of his career, Rowan Campbell retained the IBO All-Africa super middleweight title with a seventh round technical knockout win over the highly regarded Patrick Mukala from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, at Emperors Palace near Kempton Park on Friday night.
Both fighters came out rather cautious in the opening round as they sparred for openings but in rounds two and three Campbell (75.40kg) closed the gap and began to fight in the pocket as he shaded the rounds.
Mukala (76.20kg) had a better round four as he caught the champion with some jolting uppercuts, but the superbly conditioned Campbell kept pressing forward.
Campbell continued apply the pressure in round five but there was a lot of mauling and holding in the sixth round as Mukala began to tire.
It was a confident Campbell who came out for the seventh round as he continued to attack and after a series of blows to the head and body referee Tony Nyangiwe who did a a good job, stepped in to wave the fight off at 2 minutes 42 seconds into the round.
The unused judges were Allen Matakane, Phumeza Zinakile and Simon Xamlashe.
Campbell improved his record to 11-0; 7 and Mukala’s record dropped to 11-2-1; 10
KNAPP WINS AGAINST ALEXSANDR ZHURAVSKIY
In the main supporting bout South Africa’s Rourke Knapp, 21, kept his unbeaten record with a unanimous ten round point’s decision over Aleksandr Zhuravskiy, 34, from Kazakhstan.
Judges David van Nieuwenhuizen and Simon Mokadi scored it 97-93 and 96-94 and the third judge Namhla Tyaluba had it a rather way out 98-92.
In a poor fight which looked more like a sparring session both fighters who had high percentage knockout records were not prepared to take a chance and open up.
Referee Thabo Spampool had an easy nights work other than in round six when he had to warn the fighters to watch coming in with their heads, after Knapp received a small cut on his right eye.
MALAJIKA WINS VACANT GAUTENG TITLE
Ricardo Malajika 5-0; 1 was just too fast and slick for Layton Gloss 5-3;3 as he won on a fifth round technical knockout to take the vacant Gauteng junior bantamweight title. The time was 1 minute 33 seconds.
In the opening bout of the evening junior-lightweight Cayden Truter won on points over four rounds against Lopez Maluleke. The scores were 39-37 and 40-36 twice.
Junior middleweight Darrin Rossouw who was making his pro debut stopped fellow debutant Ramsy Hlongwani in the fourth round. The time was 2 minutes 59 seconds.
The tournament was presented by Rodney Berman of Golden Gloves Promotion