When you’re a southpaw, standing at a towering 5’9, with a seventy-two-inch reach at bantamweight you’re in a pretty good shape. And former super flyweight champion Zolani Tete is that guy.
Tete (23 – 3, 19 KO’s) started his 2016 with a bang. In early March, the South African was impressive and dominant, stopping Jose Santos Gonzalez in eight, in a bout tucked into the Terry Flanagan vs Derry Mathews undercard in Liverpool, U.K.
Recently signed with power broker Frank Warren, the twenty-eight-year-old Tete is positioning himself nicely for a title run this year. Having exposure on a platform like BoxNation can only benefit this talented former champion.
Immediately after disposing of Gonzalez, IFL TV was able to catch up with Tete as he was decompressing in his locker room. Tete did not mince any words when speaking about his future.
“I want to fight Lee Haskins, he’s the champion, May or June, before the end of June I might fight him”.
Haskins (32 -3, 14 KO’s) you might remember, was penciled in to go against Randy Caballero for the vacant IBF bantamweight title on the Canelo vs Cotto undercard in June. Unfortunately, Caballero came in way overweight and Haskins was awarded the title at the scales.
Tete did have empathy for Haskins as his missed the exposure of being featured on a high profile card such as Canelo vs Cotto, “he fought his way up, he deserved the chance”.
There’s another potential opponent in Tete’s crosshairs to speak of. None other than the great lineal super bantamweight Guillermo Rigondeaux, who was also supposed to appear on the Flanagan vs Mathews card but was scratched due to visa issues.
“Rigondeaux is (one of) the best, rated pound for pound in the world, every fighter has that dream to fight one of the best fighters, and I believe Rigondeaux is one of the best boxers, I’d love to fight him, in a year or two if he’s at super bantamweight I’d love to fight him”
With superior size attributes, solid skill set, punching power and strong promotional backing, things are looking up for Tete. And based on his last performance and championship experience, he will certainly be a tough out for Haskins, “Rigo”, or any others that cross his path.