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Lovemore Ndou in the USA

HCB Press Release - 2/17/2007

New IBF super lightweight world champion Lovemore “Black Panther” Ndou flew out of Sydney on Friday headed for the USA and talks with American promoter Art Pelullo, who co-promotes Ricky Hatton.

“Art Pelullo was kind enough to invite me to visit with him and I look forward to hearing what he has to offer me,” said Ndou, who also plans to be at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York on Saturday night to watch the Lou DiBella promoted Paul Malignaggi in action.

35 year-old Ndou became the IBF’s mandatory No.1 contender after his thrilling stoppage win over fellow contender Naoufel Ben Rabah on February 4 at the Homebush State Sports Centre. When Ricky Hatton refused to defend against the “Black Panther” and vacated his IBF world title, Ndou was declared the IBF world champion today on the basis of his win over Rabah.

While Ndou is still keen to face Hatton in the future, he is also interested in a re-match with WBC world champion Junior Witter in a 140lbs unification match.

“When I lost on points to Witter,” explained Ndou, “I took the fight on short notice. Give Lovemore Ndou time to prepare and I will beat any super lightweight in the world. When I beat Witter to win the WBC world title and add to my IBF world title, Ricky Hatton will then have to fight me.”

Born in Transvaal, South Africa and now a citizen of Australia, Ndou (45 wins, 8 losses, 1 draw, 30 knockouts) will also visit the offices of the International Boxing Federation (IBF) in New Jersey during his week long stay in the USA.

“I would like to thank IBF President Marian Muhammad and her staff for giving me the opportunity to compete for and win the IBF world title,” said Ndou. “I pledge to carry my IBF world title with great honour and respect. The public will now see how a true boxing world champion conducts himself inside and outside the ring.”

That also means facing the best boxers out there at 140lbs.

“Ricky Hatton, Junior Witter, Jose Luis Castillo, Souleymane M’Baye, Diego Corrales, Ricardo Torres, line them all up and I will knock them all out!” declared Ndou.

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