• Heavyweight

Williams manager scoffs at Botha bribe claims

ESPN Staff
February 14, 2013
Sonny Bill Williams on his way to a point victory over Francois Botha © Getty Images

Veteran South African boxer Francois Botha has claimed he was offered US$155,000 to throw his fight against Sonny Bill Williams in Brisbane last week.

The fight, which Williams won on points, was overshadowed by reports Botha, 44, subsequently failed a drugs test and there was also confusion over the duration as it was originally scheduled to be over 12 rounds but was actually fought over 10.

Botha alleges Williams' manager Khoder Nasser offered him the money three days before the World Boxing Association fight but he refused.

"I think he's still in a daze," Nasser told Fairfax Media. "This is the same bloke who said he didn't know about the fight being 10 rounds, and then his promoter and he himself came out later and said it was 10 rounds. Then he said he wasn't drugs tested and then he said he was tested. Then he said he was tested by my brother, and now he has come up with this one. What is next?

"He has got to come to terms with the reality that he got his ass whipped by a guy who had had only five fights. It's all well and good to come out with all these allegations after, but where's his manhood? It's absolute madness. If it happened like he said, why didn't he come out and report it then? Or does it suit him now?"

Although the bout was ostensibly for the vacant WBA international heavyweight title there was no representative of the association present. Bookmakers refunded bets because of the confusion of the number of rounds.

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