After almost losing his life, Simpiwe “V12” Vetyeka has returned to the boxing ring to train amateur fighters. He became the first local boxer to unify titles in 2013 but had to give up his boxing career after he was hit by a passing vehicle while opening the door of his own on Amalinda Road in East London.
The accident left him with two broken legs of which he was operated on but the recovery was not sufficient for him to box again. Vetyeka works for the Cecil Makiwane Hospital in Mdantsane and has opened another chapter in his life as an Amateur boxing Trainer. Vetyeka has already produced an Eastern Cape amateur champion from his V12 Boxing Gym.
“I was given the Community Hall last year next to my house in Mdantsane where I train amateur boxers. Some of my fighters had their first fights in May last year and already I have produced an Eastern Cape amateur champion. I was also chosen to be part of the coaching staff for the Buffalo City Metro amateur team that participated in the Eastern Cape Games in Mthatha in September. But I was involved with the cadets,” he said.
The former SA champion was born in Duncan Village, north of East London, says he would have won his fourth world title had it not been for the car accident.”My promoter told me that the offer was already on the table,” said Vetyeka who is yet to be compensated by the Road Accident Fund.
In 2013, Vetyeka won the IBO featherweight belt from Daud Yordan in April and in December unified it with the WBA Super title when he Indonesian icon Chris John Australia in 2013. Before that sixth-round stoppage, John had been undefeated after 52 fights. The victory saw Vetyeka become the first local fighter to achieve the feat of winning two titles simultaneously, the second being Hekkie Budler.