Nick Gordon
1 minute read
31 Aug 2013
8:00 am

Ilunga faces stern title test

Nick Gordon

Over the past few weeks the combatants on the "Triple Thunder" bill at Emperors Palace tonight have stayed disciplined and dedicated to their craft.

Eric Fields and Ilunga Makabu during the press conference and weigh-in held at Emperors Palace in Kempton Park, 27 August 2013 to promote the Triple Thunder boxing tournament, to be held on the 31 August. Picture - Neil McCartney

That they have kept their eyes on the prizes on offer in their respective contests was evident at yesterday’s weigh-in with all fighters coming in comfortably under the relevant weight classes on a card that offers up three titles sanctioned by the World Boxing Council (WBC).

The headliner sees Ilunga Makabu lace up for the first defence of his WBC silver cruiserweight title when he meets American Eric Fields and it’s a contest that could be a proper test for the title holder given that his opponent has only lost once in his 23 outings to date.

The only blot on his copybook came against former world title challenger Ola Afolabi back in 2008 when stopped in the final round of their clash for the WBO NABO title.

Since then though, Fields has racked up 10 victories and improved to 22 wins with 16 coming via the short route, suggesting he packs a punch.

“He’s a good fighter from what we’ve seen. He moves his head well, he’s accurate and he throws a lot of punches,” Francois Duguay, who trains Fields, said ahead of the contest.

“But he’s a fighter who stands in front of you,” he added hinting that Makabu’s defences would be properly tested.

Makabu was made to work when claiming the belt against Dmitry Kucher last month with the Harold Volbrecht-trained fighter prevailing on a majority decision after 12 rounds, the first time he’s been forced to go the distance.

In a clash for the WBC international junior-flyweight title tonight, Nkosinathi Joyi gets a massive chance to get back to winning ways when he challenges Benezer Alalod for the Filipino’s green belt in a new division having claimed both his world titles as a minimumweight one.