TOMMY "Tommy Gun" Oosthuizen has been ruled out of the International Boxing Organisation super middleweight world title encounter with hard-hitting Australian Michael Bolling after a traffic accident at the weekend.
Oosthuizen has been replaced by Isaac "The Golden Boy" Chilemba in the fight at Emperors Palace on June 19.
Chilemba was originally pencilled in to take on Rupert van Aswegen for the World Boxing Council International championship on the same night, but Van Aswegen decided to retire from the sport altogether, leaving Chilemba without an opponent.
"It is funny how things work," said Golden Gloves Promotions head Rodney Berman.
"Firstly I was told that Van Aswegen had decided to retire from boxing last week because of a recurring hand injury, thus eliminating the possibility of him fighting Isaac. Then we heard the terrible news of Tommy's accident. But Isaac is a suitable replacement and a safe bet to take the title on the 19th."
Chilemba, who normally fights in the light heavyweight division, will have to shed 4kg in order to make the super middleweight category for the fight. While this might be a daunting prospect for other boxers, Chilemba and his trainer, Elias Tshabalala, are confident he will make the weight without any hassles.
"It is no hassle because Isaac usually tips the scales at fractionally above the super middleweight limit. The weight loss will make him stronger because he will be losing fat and building muscle. I have been working with Isaac and he is now a classy fighter and not a boring one. If he is in the right frame of mind on the 19th I don't see the fight ending in 12 rounds," Tshabalala said.
"It is not a problem for me because I used to fight in the super middleweight division and I won't have to kill myself running long distances with plastics or something to lose the weight," said Chilemba. " I will still have my power and a bit more speed. I have added more power and style since I joined Elias and people will see a different fighter on the 19th. They will be surprised."
Chilemba was not at all perturbed at having to face the Australian on such short notice or by the fact that he will have to prepare differently for the unbeaten Bolling than he would have done for Van Aswegen.
"I saw footage of his last fight and he is not very impressive. He is very slow for a super middleweight and I don't think he has enough power to stop me. He is not a great boxer. I could easily have him in two or three rounds. It will be a walk-over for me."
Chilemba said he was uncertain as to how long he would stay in the super middleweight division if he won the title.
"I think I will make two or three defences at super middleweight before I return to light heavyweight. But I will have to sit down with my manager and trainer and map a way forward."
If Chilemba manages to beat Bolling it will undoubtedly set up a great local derby between Chilemba and Oosthuizen, which fight fans have been anticipating for some time now.