By Mesuli Zifo
Top Australian flyweight fighter Hussein Hussein arrived at the East London airport yesterday for his IBF world title elimination clash against Moruti Mthalane at Jan Smuts Stadium on July 5.
Accompanied by his trainer/brother Billy and a sparring partner, Hussein chatted freely with reporters and described his visit to South Africa as his return home following a stint in the country 10 years ago when he was still an amateur.
Hussein, who is remembered for his two epic battles against Mexican legend Jorge Arce for the WBC world flyweight crown in 2005, expressed confidence in beating Mthalane, which will pave the way for an IBF world title challenge against Philippines Nonito Donaire.
Hussein appeared to be on course to challenge Donaire but the fight fell through. “I was disappointed when the fight between me and Donaire failed to materialise,” he said.
“But lucky I was handed this life line and I can assure you now that the winner will be me.”
Hussein said he had watched Mthalane on tape and described the South African as a strong fighter. “He is good but I am not sure if he has faced fighters in my league,” he said.
The Aussie, nicknamed “Hussy,” has fought 35 times, losing four.
Mthalane, who holds the SA flyweight crown, has had 22 bouts, scoring 15 stoppages and losing one.