Thu Mar 30 06:48:41 SAST 2017

Lerena, Muller set for Part 3?

2017-02-12 12:26:26.0 | Bongani Magasela |

Should Kevin "KO Kid" Lerena and Johnny "The Hurricane" Muller meet again in what will be the third clash between these two ring gladiators whose previous two meetings had fans on their toes at Emperors Palace?

Kevin Lerena and Johnny Muller during their Cruiserweight bout at Emperors Palace in Kempton Park, East Rand, on November 15 2014. Muller won the bout on points. /Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images

"Yes," says former SA welterweight king Harold "The Hammer" Volbrecht, who is one of a few accomplished trainers in the country.

And the lion-hearted Muller is one of his charges. "We have an axe to grind with Kevin," said Volbrecht straight up. "We were not happy about the manner in which the second fight ended, so it will make sense for the two fighters to settle the score once and for all."

Muller, who does not understand what it means to step back, won the first fight on points after 10 rounds in 2014, but the brawny Lerena avenged that loss with a 10th round stoppage last year.

Muller turned professional in 2001 and held the SA and WBC International Silver light heavyweight belts.

He pulverised Herman Potgieter in two rounds in December to improve his knockout ratio to 14 in 20 wins from 29 bouts.

The two fights between Muller and Lerena were staged by Golden Gloves at Emperors Palace, where these boxers' courage has endeared them with boxing fans.

But Volbrecht hinted that Muller, from Roodepoort, West Rand, could face Thabiso "The Rock" Mchunu in what could be a career-decider for both fighters.

Mchunu, from Cato Ridge in KwaZulu-Natal, forms part of the Smiths Gym of brothers Peter, George and Sean. The sons of former SA light heavyweight champion Kosie Smith hone the skills of many fighters, including Lerena.

Mchunu raised eyebrows when he won the SA cruiserweight belt in only his fourth fight in 2008. He added the WBA Pan African, ABU and NABF belts in his collection.

Mchunu was knocked out in the 10th round by Congolese Ilunga "Junior" Makabu in their WBC elimination bout in 2015 and was later stopped in nine rounds by Ukrainian Oleksandr Usyk for the WBO belt in the US in December.

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