World Champion Belt Belonging to Nelson Mandela Gifted to Him by Sugar Ray Leonard Is Stolen

World Champion Belt Belonging to Nelson Mandela Gifted to Him by Sugar Ray Leonard Is Stolen

  • The World Championship belt belonging to former South African president Nelson Mandela has been reported as stolen
  • This belt was one of many important artefacts that were located inside the Mandela House in Orlando, Soweto
  • It was gifted to the late, great statesman by legendary American boxer Sugar Ray Leonard

The WBC world championship belt that was given to former president Nelson Mandela by the great American boxer Sugar Ray Leonard has been stolen.

Leonard gifted it to Madiba shortly after the statesman was released from Robben Island in 1990. Mandela was renowned for his love of the sport of boxing.

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Sugar ray Leonard about to defend one of his WBC belts (left), and when he got to meet his idol Nelson Mandela. Image source: @SugarRayLeonard
Source: Twitter

According to eNCA, the theft happened on 01 July. It is reported that when staff arrived for work at the Mandela House in Orlando, Soweto, they noticed that locks on the building appeared to have been tampered with.

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Upon further investigation, the belt had disappeared. No other artefacts known to be housed inside the home - now a museum - have been reported as stolen, with Orlando police said to be investigating the matter.

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According to boxing statistics website BoxRec, Leonard won the WBC welterweight title on two separate occasions. He then moved up a weight division to middleweight, winning the WBC world title twice in that division.

He moved up one more weight category to light-heavyweight, also claiming the WBC belt in this division Leonard retired with a record of 40 fights, 36 wins, three losses and one draw.

Throwback: When Floyd Mayweather beat South Africa's Phillip "The Time Bomb" Ndou for WBC Lightweight belt

On the way to greatness, Floyd Mayweather had to contend with one of South Africa's finest ever fighters Phillip "The Time Bomb" Ndou.

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As reported by Sports Brief, "Money" faced off against Ndou for the WBC lightweight title on 01 November 2003 at the Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Mayweather won the fight fairly comfortably, knocking out Ndou in the seventh round in front of an entertained and partisan crowd in the city he hails from.

This was also Mayweather's 13th win from 13 world title fights.

Source: Sports Brief News