SA pro barred from boxing for life for MMA fight

Friday, July 11, 2014

In North America, mixed martial arts has for years moved past boxing for number of bouts and contests. The state, provincial, tribal, and municipal government bodies that regulate boxing, have embraced MMA, to the benefit of all parties involved.

This is not the case in other parts of the world, unfortunately. In South Africa, a heavyweight athlete who competes in both MMA and in boxing has been barred for life from boxing.

Bongani Magasela has the story, for The Sowetan.

ACTING Boxing SA chief executive Loyiso Mtya says Zimbabwean Elvis Moyo will no longer be allowed to box in SA and his professional career is over.

The 30-year-old Moyo broke the rules when he participated in a mixed martial arts (MMA) fight against Brendon Groenewald in Cape Town last month and Mtya said he would not be allowed inside a South African boxing ring again.

Moyo had managed to compete in the MMA undetected and only came to the attention of Boxing SA officials after his Extreme Fighting Championship Africa heavyweight title fight against Groenewald, which was his fourth in the full-contact combat sport.

“Professional boxers are not allowed to be involved in mixed martial arts,” Mtya said.

“But it is not easy for us to monitor them. They fight without our consent. Elvis is not going to fight with us [Boxing SA] any more. It is really a concern for us that our boxers fight in mixed martial arts tournaments.”

Mtya explained that boxing is governed by several strict regulations that are intended to make the sport safer and the absence of these rules from MMA motivates Boxing SA's objection to boxers participating in the combat sport.

“Their (MMA) gloves are too small,” Mtya said. “They use elbows, they kick and when a guy is down they do not stop for a count. Instead, a guy is hit when he is down.

“They are allowed to go into the next fight while still injured from their previous fight because there is no punishment index [a report compiled by a doctor at ringside that measures the amount of punishment boxers receive inside the ring].”

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