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Watch:South African boxer Simiso Buthelezi dead from brain injury after bout By Jenna Lemoncelli

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Simiso Buthelezi, a professional boxer from South Africa, has died after being hospitalized following his WBF African lightweight title fight against Siphesihle Mntungwa last weekend.

According to Boxing South Africa, Buthelezi — whose trainer, Bheki Mngomezulu, said his client was in a coma — died from a brain injury Tuesday night at a hospital in Durban, South Africa. He was 24.

“Towards the end of his bout, Mr. Buthelezi collapsed and was taken to hospital and it was discovered that he suffered a brain injury which resulted in internal bleeding,” BSA said in the statement read. “At the hospital, Mr Buthelezi was given the best care possible but he succumbed to the injury.”

Simiso Buthelezi, left, became disoriented during his fight against Siphesihle Mntungwa.
Simiso Buthelezi, left, became disoriented during his fight against Siphesihle Mntungwa.
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During his last bout against Mntungwa last week, Buthelezi appeared disorientated and began wildly punching the air moments into the 10th and final round. The referee called off the fight when Buthelezi began punching the air with his back turned to his opponent and then in the direction of the referee. Mntungwa was declared the winner following the scary scene.

An official cause of death has yet to be determined. It’s also unclear how Buthelezi suffered the injury. Mngomezulu said, per News 24, that Buthelezi was in control throughout the bout.

“I really can’t explain what happened to be honest. It was bewildering, but in his training and in the build-up to the fight, there was nothing untoward with regards to his condition,” the trainer said. “He was in good nick before the fight.”

Boxing South Africa said in its statement an investigation into the fight and the death is underway.

Buthelezi, who was undefeated in the ring prior Sunday’s fight, had recently graduated university with a degree in botany and zoology.

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