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By Robert Brizel, Head RCM Boxing Correspondent
The ‘Rumble in the Jungle’ in Kinshasa will be broadcast next weekend. Sorry folks, this reporter is not referring to a rerun of Muhammad Ali versus George Foreman for the World Heavyweight championship.‘The Road Warrior’, Glen Johnson, will fight Ilunga Junior’ Makabu of the Congo for the vacant World Boxing Council International Cruiserweight title At the Grand Hotel de Kinshasa, in Kinshasa, The Congo, on June 28, 2014.
Sitvens Bujaj and Junior Anthony Wright fought to a split decision draw in May 2014 in New York for the same WBC International belt, meaning the title remained vacant. Bujaj, who is world ranked by the WBC at cruiserweight, had ideas of fighting Glen Johnson if he won the bout, but sustained a broken jaw. Johnson indeed wanted the WBC belt, and instead accepted world ranked Makabu as the opponent when the belt remained vacant when Bujaj drew in his first attempt to win the belt.
A former world champion at 175 pounds, Johnson has defeated Junior Ramos, Bobby Gunn and Jaime Velasquez at cruiserweight. At age 45, Johnson, Miami, Florida, holds a record similar to the fictional Rocky Balboa, 54-18-2 with 37 knockouts. Makabu, a southpaw, has won 16 consecutive pro bouts since losing his pro debut in 2008, and is ranked number ten in the world by BoxRec.
The winner of Johnson versus Makabu could get a world title shot at the WBC World Cruiserweight champion, Kzysztof Wlodarczyk of Poland later in 2014. While Johnson is not to be compared to heavyweight Muhammad Ali, Johnson has lasted longer than Ali and maintained his faculties, enjoying greater success at advanced age in the weight classes below heavyweight. Kinshasa is a rare boxing venue, a part of boxing history.
On the undercard, Kenya’s Bernard Adie will fight Congo southpaw Zack ‘The Black Warrior’ Mwekassa in a 12 round bout for the vacant African Boxing union Heavyweight title. Matamba Postolo of The Congo will fight Pascal Ndomba of Tanzania for the African Boxing Union Light Heavyweight title. Jonathan Pasi of The Congo will face 11-0 Alexandru Jur of Romania in a 12 round bout at cruiserweight. Other bouts are also planned for the seven bout card, including ten rounders featuring Congo cruiserweight Manny Sadic and Congo light welterweight Dieu Merci Nzau.