Female Fight of the Year
Bukiwe Nonina vs. Alesia Graf
World Bantamweight Title (31.3 / Cape Town).
2016: Hyun Mi Choi vs. Unathi Myekeni.
2015: Gabisile Tshabalala vs. Unathi Myekeni.
2014: Rola El Halabi vs. Victoria Cisneros.
2013: Raja Amasheh vs. Eva Voraberger.
2012: Holly Holm vs. Anne Sophie Mathis II.
2011: Christina Hammer vs. Maria Lindberg.
2010: Myriam Lamare vs. Lucia Morelli.
2009: Myriam Lamare vs. Ann Marie Saccurato.
When 25-year-old Bukiwe Nonina dared to get into the ring against the vastly more experienced German veteran Alesia Graf, not many put her money on the South African bantamweight champion.
Considering that Nonina was just 9-3-1 with her best win coming in a national title fight against a 3-0 challenger, this seemed reasonable assessment.
After all, Graf had a decade more of ring experience and was a former world champion with a stellar 29-5 record. And Alesia didn’t perform bad nor had an off-night that March 31 night in Khayelitsha, a small township close to Cape Town, more the opposite.
It was the fact that Nonina rose to the occasion that made this a very memorable fight, outstanding enough to be our WBF Female Fight of the Year 2017.
Graf was the aggressor, while Nonina put in a masterful display of boxing and in the end it was so close that if one round would have been scored differently, the vacant WBF Womens world bantamweight championship would have remained vacant.
As it was, Nonina won a razor-thin but deserved 10-round decision, but in reality both girl warriors came out winners, what to say about the fans who witnessed a great battle.