‘‘WHO is Catherine Phiri? I have watched clips of her fighting and she does not scare me at all,’’ says South African boxer Gabisile Tshabalala.
Tshabalala was speaking on arrival at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (KKIA) in Lusaka yesterday ahead of the World Boxing Council (WBC) bantamweight gold title fight against champion Catherine on Saturday at Government Complex in Lusaka.
The confident Tshabalala said she will be fighting for her family and the entire South Africa.
“I am the best. I have watched clips of Catherine’s previous fight, I am not scared. I am not aiming for a knock-out because that just comes but I will definitely carry the victory,” she said.
Tshabalala’s trainer Elias Mpembe said they were in Lusaka to collect the belt.
“The boxer is very much ready; she can even go into the ring right now. We have prepared for the fight. We will definitely return with the belt home,” Mpembe said.
Promoter Mxolis Gumede said Catherine fought mediocre Yasmin Rivers, the former WBC champion of Mexico whom she knocked out and grabbed the title, and now she will face a tough-tested Tshabalala.
“This girl has been training for four months and I can assure you Catherine will not have it easy. Catherine should be ready to kiss the title goodbye on Saturday. The fact that she fought a mediocre boxer like Rivers doesn’t scare us at all,” Gumede said.
Tshabalala has a record of 11 fights, losing only one.
Meanwhile, Oriental Quarries Boxing Promotions (OQBP) operations manager Christopher Malunga said all is set for this Saturday’s fight.
He said Catherine was doing well in camp and she will overcome the highly-rated South African.
“We are ready to stage the fight this Saturday. I have no doubt the fight will be exciting, listening to the warnings from the South African camp,” he said.