22 September 2017

Zimbabwe: Tamuka Dates O'donell

England-based  Zimbabwe-born boxer Tamuka Muchapondwa will step back into the ring on October 20 when he takes on Briton John O'Donell for the English welterweight title at the 02 Indigo in London.

Muchapondwa's fight against O'Donell was initially set for September 9 in London but was rescheduled to October 20 after the latter sustained an injury during training.

This title fight is also the final eliminator for the main British title.

The Muchapondwa, O'Donell title fight will be the main supporting bout of Commonwealth and Olympic Games medallist Joe Joyce's heavyweight professional debut against Ian Lewison. Muchapondwa v O'Donnell will be for the latter's English welterweight title which he won via split decision against Erick Ochieng over 10 rounds in March.

And last month the British Boxing Board of Control, in their monthly circular, said: "Following injury to O'Donnell, a new date and venue is awaited from promoter Joshua Goodwin for the contest."

Joshua's father and promoter Steve Goodwin provided some of the undercard fighters for David Haye's heavyweight comeback in 2016.

Muchapondwa (16-1, 4KOs), who is based in Reading, has already stepped up his preparations for this big fight.

He has been sparring with Olympic silver medalist Fred Evans this week and is in confident mood.

"I don't need to talk much. I'll get the job done when the lights come on," Muchapondwa said. "In this fight I'm putting everything on the line and victory is the only option.

"I've been working closely with Kensley Maloney and Head Chef Olly Mills on how to fuel me correctly in preparation for this English title showdown (with O'Donell) on October 20 at the 02 Indigo." But Muchapondwa "has got a mountain to climb" in his fight against O'Donell (32-1, 11KO), who is the current English Champion and a former Commonwealth Champion.

Muchapondwa (24) moved to England from Harare in 2004 when he was 11 and has been a professional boxer for the past six years.

Meanwhile, another Zimbabwe-born boxer Dereck Chisora has signed a promotional deal with Matchroom Boxing in England.

According to British Boxing News, the former world heavyweight title challenger returns to the ring in Liverpool next Saturday before attempting to regain the European title when he challenges Agit Kabayel for the title with a date and venue to be announced later this week.

Chisora's last action was a fight of the year contender against Dillian Whyte in Manchester in December, with Whyte edging out "Del Boy" via split decision after 12 relentless rounds of action. The Finchley star is gunning for a rematch with "The Bodysnatcher" but his immediate focus is rounds in the bank on Merseyside before getting his hands on the European crown once again.

"I'm looking forward to getting back in the ring after a frustrating period of injury, starting in Liverpool next Saturday," Chisora told the British Boxing News yesterday. "Then we are going to win the European title in November, and then I'm going to punish that punk Dillian Whyte and move on to a shot at the World title."

"I'm pleased to welcome Dereck to the team and look forward to being involved in some big fights with him over the next year," said promoter Eddie Hearn. "You know what you are going to get with Del Boy, plenty of drama and a load of heart -- he will return to action in Liverpool and challenge for the European title in November. We will work towards a Whyte rematch for early next year, it's a fight that I think boxing needs to see again."

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