SBW Vs Botha – as it happened!
Fri, 08 Feb 2013 7:02p.m.
By Greg Robertson
Hello and welcome to Brisbane Entertainment Centre - the setting for the eagerly anticipated WBA International Heavyweight Title Fight between Sonny Bill Williams and Francois ‘White Buffalo’ Botha.
These boxers come from very different backgrounds; SBW a relative boxing greenhorn is looking to elevate his sporting career to even loftier heights. While Botha, a journeyman of sorts will be hoping to add to his 29 career knock out’s and perhaps re-launch a fading boxing career.
We bring you live streaming written commentary, video highlights (available immediately AFTER each fight) and all the boxing action.
FIGHT CARD and Undercard to Williams V Botha, February 8
Remember to REFRESH YOUR BROWSER occasionally so you don't miss any of the action
LIVE COMMENTARY… Our apologies for slow, short commentary - we experienced technical difficulties beyond our control. All VIDEO IS UP.
ROUND 3: Williams on top. Lovely shot from Williams and Botha responds in kind with one of his own. SBW is boxing, not fighting. Good stuff, he's winning the rounds.
ROUND 2: Botha with a cut, just below the eyebrow.... still really settling into this one. Long left jab from Williams right at the end of the round was the only shot in anger.
FIGHT TWO: Daniel Baff Vs Peter Brennan, Six 3 minute rounds
Round 1: Baff already knocks Brennan down. It hit the top of the head but it was a knock down all right. Two more right hands then a left hook. This is very one sided. Baff huge to the body, I felt that one here and he's down again and has to survive 40 more seconds Down again... three knock downs and it's over. VIDEO UP
FIGHT ONE: Bilal Akkawy Vs Paul Edwards. Six, 2 minute rounds
Round 1: They've touched gloves and we're underway. Wow that didn't last long. The young Bilal was just too strong with a couple of smashes to the body and some nice stiff straight shots. VIDEO UP.
Okay fight fans we have our live pictures and the banter has begun. Sonny Bill - Quade Cooper... they are two amazing athletes, there is no denying that. But can they fight? I mean, can they REALLY fight. Cooper, well I have no idea how he will go. SBW... my jury is still out. He can, of course, but at what level? This is a tester. It's a stepping stone across the boxing water. After the end of this one he'll either have a shot at a real career or he'll slip and get up looking very wet behind the ears. It's tough... very touch, to pick.
I'm on count down... we're on countdown... crown a Kiwi day, or at least give him a belt! Williams won't have it as easy as his previous five cake-walks. Lewis... Holyfield... Tyson... Botha has fought them all - and lost, mind you. But he went some way with them in the tango of the ring. In saying that, that was - literally - last millennium. He's 44... SBW is 27. Age is a factor, no doubt. Punching power. You feel that Botha wants him and wants him early. But before all of that we have an undercard to get through so saddle up, crack a can and enjoy.
Let’s get ready to ruuuuuummmmmbllllllleeee. Shoot, will now probably have Michael Buffer on my case trying to get some money out of the company for using that. Anyways… I’m excited about this one, for sure. And don’t be lured into thinking that there is only one decent fight on the card. Quade Cooper should be interesting if he can keep his mouth shut for long enough to throw a punch and also Alex Leapai against Matt Hicks should be interesting. Leapai can box.
First bout is scheduled for 9pm NZT (commentary from then), in the meantime check out the video from the weigh-in with reaction and comment from both SBW and Botha.
Watching YouTube footage used to be Sonny Bill Williams' only training tool when he took up boxing.
And the man who kept appearing in his search results was a certain "Francois Botha".
Now the code-hopping Williams wants to kick-start his own boxing highlights reel - with Botha as his first big-name victim.
Williams, 27, became a big fan of South Africa's Botha - dubbed the "White Buffalo" - when he took the unorthodox step of preparing for his first three pro fights by surfing through YouTube for hours.
These days, ex-All Black Williams takes his boxing a lot more seriously - and he had to after agreeing to take on his hero in their WBA International heavyweight title bout in Brisbane on Friday night.
"Hopefully I earn his respect but I won't be asking for an autograph," laughed Williams after weighing in at 107kg on Thursday before Botha, 44, tipped the scales at 115.25kg.
Williams (5-0 record) stared down Botha (48-8-3) after their weigh-in - but the Sydney Roosters NRL player already had a good look at the South African on his computer.
"When I first got into the boxing game, I watched a lot of fights on YouTube and obviously when you type in 'boxing', Frans' name comes up a lot," Williams said.
"I have seen a lot of his fights and studied him a lot. I have got a gameplan but one punch could change that."
The quietly spoken Williams was in contrast to a boisterous Botha who took over their pre-fight media conference, even interrupting the weigh-in for Quade Cooper who will appear on Friday night's undercard.
"If he wins and bulks up, I am willing to fight him," Botha laughed, pointing to the Wallabies five-eighth.
Williams compared taking on the hulking Botha with tackling a 115kg Springbok prop.
"They breed them big over there and they just keep coming," he smiled.
"I will hit him with all I have got ... it will be a massive challenge.
"What's the worst that could happen - get knocked out? At least I tried.
"He's trying to play mind games but I have been involved in professional sport for 10 years so I know how all that works.
"I hopefully do all my talking in the ring."
In contrast to Williams, Cooper curiously didn't bother doing any research ahead of his professional boxing debut against car crash assessment officer Barry Dunnett, who has a Muay Thai background.
"I haven't seen any of his fights and I am not going to bother watching them," Cooper said.
"I am just going to follow the gameplan that I have."
The usually reserved Cooper (87.1kg) looked like he wanted to start the fight early in an intense face to face with Dunnett (88.6kg) after their weigh-in.
But clearly Dunnett wasn't intimidated.
"He doesn't look like an overly confident person - he couldn't even show up to this on time," Dunnett said.
"I don't go back to a $100,000 rugby contract after this so I will be going out there fighting hard."
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15/02/2013 9:24:39 a.m.
Sonny,,bro take on David Tua and see what happens. lol . otherwize just hand over the belt. lol. 11th round with Botha, Sonny you would of got damaged. But good on you Sonny, however leave the boxing to the pro's and stick to your team sports aye, for your own safety bro... good luck!!
11/02/2013 9:02:53 a.m.
John Deer wrote:
Come on Sonny,if there had been 2 more rounds you would have been on the floor.Stay with what you can do not what you can't.Your a rugby player not a boxer.
10/02/2013 3:40:59 p.m.
congratulation sonny you are the man on the match.. we are samoan nz an it is YOU ARE THE MAN.
10/02/2013 10:32:40 a.m.
The fight was advertised as 12 rounds. That is what the rules require. TAB accepted bets on 12 rounds. Botha thought it was 12 rounds. The judges thought it was 12 rounds. Before the fight, Williams spoke of 12 rounds. The ring announcer stopped it after 10. Williams now says it was always to be 10 rounds. Do Williams and the ring announcer know something that no one else knows? Or was this a set up between them? Williams should never appear in the ring again.
10/02/2013 2:38:11 a.m.
Sonny Bill is a cat.
9/02/2013 3:06:43 p.m.
Despite the controversy involving the rounds, it was still eveident that SBW was way ahead and Botha did not even have any hard knocks on SBW even towards the end of round 10.
9/02/2013 1:28:39 p.m.
Mike Farrell wrote:
This opens up some interesting possibilites.If the AB's are ahead with ten minutes to go the referee should announce the game will be 70 minutes
9/02/2013 12:57:48 p.m.
Chantel Tapiata wrote:
Sonny Bill didn't deserve to win that, boxing is so corrupt! Clean it up
9/02/2013 12:31:10 p.m.
i though sonny bill didnt pay attention to corrupt judges...
9/02/2013 12:09:56 p.m.
Maloti Kesaia Maama wrote:
love you sonny bill, haters gon hate aye. man, you beat him up, you had mean swag lastnight and your so goodlucking. i was cheering for you and making sure you won :) your the best and you rock my socks, #team sonny #team swag #team cute #team knock you out!
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