Team Regie Suganob of the Philippines experienced a disheartening defeat at the hands of South African boxer Sivenathi Nontshinga in a UD-12 IBF World Light Flyweight title fight on Sunday. The Filipino team expressed grave dissatisfaction with the events leading up to and during the match, which took place in East London, South Africa.
Sivenathi Nontshinga vs Regie Suganob
In a statement posted on Facebook by PMI Bohol Boxing Stable and later highlighted on Twitter by Tim Boxeo, Team Suganob outlined numerous grievances. Initially, the fight was set for June 16 but was postponed allegedly due to the unavailability of a TV timeslot. The rescheduled date was July 2, but Team Suganob’s request to be in South Africa a week early for acclimatization was denied, with tickets and visa documents provided late.
Upon arrival in East London after a 27-hour journey, the team found their hotel unprepared, leaving them waiting in the cold winter weather. Furthermore, Team Suganob claimed to have faced disorganization with scheduling and unexpected blood testing requests for their boxer.
One of the major issues raised by Team Regie Suganob was a last-minute change in officials. They were initially informed that officials would include a referee from the U.S., and judges from the U.S., South Africa, and the Philippines, with the IBF President as the supervisor. However, the actual officials were from South Africa and Italy, leading to concerns of bias.
Team Suganob also alleged misconduct by the promotions team, who was “bothering” them up until the eve of the fight, and mentioned that their purse was still missing at the time of the weigh-in.
Regarding the actual fight, the Filipino team was unhappy with Nontshinga’s style of play and claimed the local referee did not enforce proper boxing engagement. They believed their boxer, Regie Suganob, showed greater resilience and stamina.
Additionally, the team claimed the venue was unsafe, citing intoxicated individuals entering their dugout and engaging in mind games.
As a correction to Team Regie Suganob’s statement, it should be noted that the official scorecard listed the judges as being from France and the Philippines, contrary to what was claimed in the statement.
Despite these adversities, Team Suganob thanked their supporters and vowed to return stronger. They expressed a determination for a rematch with Nontshinga but under different circumstances.
As of now, Team Suganob has safely returned to the Philippines, still bearing a resolve to win the title.