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Please, let it be a Klitschko next

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Ben Dirs | 03:16 UK time, Sunday, 14 November 2010

MEN Arena, Manchester

I knew it was going to be a strange night the moment Audley Harrison removed his robe to reveal a T-shirt bearing the legend: 'Keep Stonebridge Adventure Playground Open'. Barely 15 minutes later, I found myself asking the question: What did Stonebridge Adventure Playground do to deserve that?

Harrison somehow managed to be even less effective in challenging for David Haye's WBA heavyweight crown than even his most vociferous critics could have imagined. One punch landed in just shy of eight minutes of boxing. All part of the game-plan, Audley claimed after the fight, before denying he had frozen in the moment.

At the weigh-in on Friday, a fellow journalist referred to the impending bout as the "best worst fight" he had ever covered. It was a moment of wry sobriety amid the giddy hysteria being stirred up by certain media outlets, although, I should add, the journalist in question did not go as far as committing his words to print.

Haye lands as Harrison crumbles. Photo: AP

It was this pre-fight hysteria that had irked so many boxing fans, those who were not led astray through the smoke and mirrors and who saw the contest for what it was - namely a mismatch, all mouth and no trousers, or what they might have referred to as their "worst worst fight".

While I can see their point, I take a slightly different view. In boxing, hype is part of the overall package to a far greater extent than in any other sport. So while boxing purists (who presumably weren't watching anyway) will no doubt feel cheated by events at the MEN Arena, others will view the overall package as a success - a fun build-up, plenty of personality and nonsense, followed by a raucous night out in a sold-out arena and a brutal knockout to boot. And as Haye pointed out: "A lot of people made a lot of money". And that, in essence, is what boxing is all about.

Only a few maverick thinkers ever believed Harrison had a chance - and so it came to pass. Once he let his hands go, Haye was too quick, too slick and simply punched too hard. Harrison, meanwhile, merely confirmed suspicions he is not entirely enamoured with the rough and tumble side of boxing.

"The one thing you can't do is put fight in a man," said Haye's trainer and manager Adam Booth. "Any man who steps through the ropes is brave but Audley is not a fighter, he's just a big man who happens to be left-handed, which makes him harder to fight."

Harrison's spirit may not be much in evidence in a ring but, make no mistake, he is spirited in other ways. To take as much flak as he has down the years and keep coming back for more - that is a form of courage.

"I'll walk away with my head held proud," said the 39-year-old during a poignant post-match news conference, before proclaiming his "mission is incomplete".

He will feel embarrassed by his performance but, in case anyone is tempted, I wouldn't feel too sorry for him. Unlike you or I when we embarrass ourselves on a night out, Audley will wake up the next morning with hundreds of thousands of pounds added to his bank account. Hundreds of thousands of pounds some fans will say should go to a better home. Stonebridge Adventure Playground, perhaps.

Of the 44 Britons to win Olympic medals in boxing, only four have gone on to win professional world titles and only nine have won a British crown. That is a lot of fighters who have fallen short of expectations.

But falling short of expectations is one thing, telling the world you are going to be undisputed heavyweight champion - over and over and over again - and failing to deliver is more difficult for the public to stomach. For that reason, Harrison's story will be told as a moral fable for years to come.

As for Haye, he was unable to promise the British public he would be fighting one of the Klitschko brothers next but he and Booth were supremely confident it would be signed, sealed and delivered in time. "There's no-one else who can bring the excitement and the numbers I do - and they know it," said Haye. "I will do everything in my power to make this happen, so have a little faith."

Booth added: "Both of them want that defining fight, especially Wladimir [the IBF and WBO champion], because at least Vitali [the WBC champion] has fought Lennox Lewis. If Wladimir was to retire without fighting David it would burn him for the rest of his life. That motivation will make them come to the table. Everyone seems really worried it's not going to happen - but it is going to happen."

If it is to happen - whether it is Wladimir, Vitali or both - it has to take place before Haye's 31st birthday on 13 October next year, when he is adamant he will retire. It is simply inconceivable it will not happen, because for all the talk of the Klitschkos needing a credible fight at this stage of their careers, Haye needs one, too, especially after what went off on Saturday night.

Negotiations are sure to be tortuous but hope and pray to the gods of boxing that a deal will be hammered out soon. Bad enough our lasting memory of Harrison will be his miserable defeat at the hands of Haye on a rainy night in Manchester, a thousand times worse if that is among our defining memories of Haye, too.

PS. I felt compelled to drag myself out of bed and write this addendum having just watched Manny Pacquiao produce one of the most astonishing performances I have ever seen in beating Antonio Margarito and winning his sixth world title in as many weight divisions. Speed, power, accuracy, stamina, for a while there I thought I might have nodded off. Truly, one of the greats...

As well as my blogs, you can follow me when I'm out, as well as when I'm about, at http://twitter.com/bendirs1 

Comments

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  • Comment number 1.

    Audley...met him....nice guy......but does not have the armour to be a heavyweight champion. The moment hsye stepped in the ring, audley looked petrified....and the moment got to him and he froze....not for the first time. In boxing you will get hit, audley does not like this thought.

    Audley, olympic champion, European champion and (wbf heavyweight champion)....its time to think about your family....and retire.

    all the best...and for david haye, good business...not chagaev awaits

  • Comment number 2.

    There was another British fighter who accused Harrison of fighting like a "big girl"...say no more, fella !! I rather suspect Audley was just after a last big pay day before jacking it in. We all knew he was rubbish and going nowhere, but perhaps those picking him to win against Haye were just well-intentioned in wanting to boost to pay packet for his retirement. So, let's be generous to our former Olympic Gold medalist and wish him well wherever he goes from here.

  • Comment number 3.

    The nonsense of this fight only came about because there are FOUR titles in every division and that means at the least that any one title is of only 25% value which is pretty small.The days when the world champion was a man of standing and was THE world heavyweight champion are long gone is there any hope that sanity will return to boxing, at least in this respect,
    For the people who paid to watch this awful mismatch should get a refund, I see no reason why Harrison who hardly made any effort should not hand over his purse to disgruntled spectators , or a good charity

  • Comment number 4.

    Yes Ben, boxing is all about people making money, which is why any fool could have told you Pacquiao wasn't going to lose that fight last night. There is too much money to be made in a fight with Mayweather for that to happen. So, putting a stooge (a decent one admittedly) in front of him to guarantee him a new title does not make him one of the true greats in my opinion. Neither does his incredibly suspicious weight gain. We'll see when the Mayweather fight happens.

    As for the other 'fight', it really doesn't merit any serious comment.

  • Comment number 5.

    The days when the world champion was a man of standing and was THE world heavyweight champion are long gone is there any hope that sanity will return to boxing, at least in this respect,
    ------------------------------------------

    At the risk of being moderated, Don King is getting on a bit now, so yes.

  • Comment number 6.

    A very skilled summing up there Ben with all the angles dealt with, a career in politics may be in your future. In the aftermath in the cold light of day we can see clearly he fight shouldn't have happened and journalists should have provided more balance. The hyping of the potential match up with Audley gave the fight legitimacy and the legs to make it a reality.

    It's ok to expect promoters and fighters to screw as much money out of any situation as they can but shouldn't the media be a little more responsible? Steve Bunce led the merry dance from what I can see. Journalist should be made listen to the 5 Live phone in after the fight last night to appreciate how scammed the general public felt about paying £15 to watch the fight. You yourself Ben criticized Audley in your own blogs but still you argued the fight was legitimate. The fight was never legitimate and journalists must call these things. The reality is that Audley is of a standard suitable for a new young pro to use as a trial horse. Haye on the other hand is a world class fighter.


    My read is Haye didn't enjoy the whole promotion of the Audley fight as Haye is a man that believes in his legacy and he wants real fights. He is the real deal and he wasn't comfortable with the whole window dressing exercise.

    The Klitschko's are the dream fight but there are other credible top ten opponents that would give Haye something to think about and give him a proper challenge. I think Haye has recognised that a Klitschko fight could end with a defeat and maybe he will leave them until he is ready for his last fight. Vitali said at he start of this year that 2010 would be his last year in the ring. I think he will retire if the Haye fight cannot be made soon.

    Vitali's future is politics, journalists hold the keys to political credibility, it really is a bit like boxing.

    By the way I didn't watch Haye v Harrison on a point of principle.

  • Comment number 7.

    If nothing else, the fight underlines that any clash in today's talent-free heavyweight division should come with a warning for fans about the lack of quality that they are likely to encounter.

    Your addendum about Pacquiao was timely; it emphasises that there are certain figures in the sport who provide a cast-iron guarantee of class. The problem for some journalists is that when someone is that good, hype becomes redundant. Hype was needed to sell Haye-Harrison, and bucketloads of it. The uninitiated, the gullible and the incorrigibly thick took the bait, of course. They may be more wary next time.

    It is Haye's job to assist the hype, of course, although one is still entitled to have serious reservations about his claim to be he saviour of heavyweight boxing. There is no such excuse for a number of press men, however, whose judgement is now open to a scrutiny that should verge on the derisive. This is not intended as a slur on you; I think that you are too inclined to take Haye at his word, but that's fair enough. The likes of Steve Bunce, and even some of the more reputable boxing scribes, need to take a long hard look at themselves. Analysis, rather than hype, please.

    My own postscript would be to reflect that we have finally lost (one ardently hopes) in Audley Harrison the living embodiment of Monty Python's Black Knight from the "Holy Grail". Still claiming that he was dragging Haye out of his comfort zone by throwing no punches whatever, Audley was carted into the night, I suppose. You can just hear the echoes of Cleese, minus arms and legs: "Come back and fight..."

    We shall not, with any luck, look on his like again.

  • Comment number 8.

    "So while boxing purists (who presumably weren't watching anyway) will no doubt feel cheated by events at the MEN Arena, others will view the overall package as a success"

    I'm not a boxing purist, but I wasn't watching either. I did (shamefully) end up listening to it on 5live but I am genuinely glad I steered clear. The fight made money but was a complete disgrace to sport and competition. I am very glad that I watched Pacquiao v Margarito though.

  • Comment number 9.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 10.

    Excuse the spelling punctuation grammer mistakes in my post.

  • Comment number 11.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 12.

    Easy way to make 2 million without throwing a punch for Fraudly Harrison...

  • Comment number 13.

    Sadly "Hype" is a huge part of boxing nowadays and this fight needed as much hyping up as it could get. Lets be fair, this fight played out just as many people expected, with Haye winning by knockout in the early rounds. It was always a mismatch and so it proved to be.

    I must admit though that with Harrison's career (hopefully) over, he certainly has a big future in promotion because no-one is better at hyping a fight as he is. He even had me believing him at one point, not that he would win but that maybe, just maybe, he could step out of the ring last night with his head held high. Unsurprisingly he failed to deliver a single punch of note let alone fulfil his destiny. At the end of day, all this fight proved was what we already knew, Harrison has all the ingredients for a Heavyweight Champ bar one, heart.

    You can't deny that the build up to the fight was good for boxing in Britain but I wonder if the end product has undone all that.

    This is no disrespect to Haye but I think that boxing purists always knew that the real boxing action was taking place across the Atlantic.

  • Comment number 14.

    I have no sympathy for anyone who paid to watch this freakshow or for those who even went to their local to waste time they will never get back trying to convince themselves that Audley Harrison is anything other than lucky so & so who had no one to fight when he won Olympic gold & has traded on it ever since. And I sicerely hope that David "I fight night club bouncers for world titles" Haye won't have the cheek to brag about this non fight. Stick to the lighter weights like I do all you true boxing fans & leave this division, which was a joke even before Lennox Lewis retired, to the people who think a big mouth makes a good fight.

  • Comment number 15.

    I was one of "the boxing purists" who wasn't watching. I am glad I made the correct decision: what an absolute, and utterly predictable, farce.

  • Comment number 16.

    Tom Davies - Not sure why anyone should get a refund - anyone who bought the fight or who turned up on the night only had to do a bit of research and they would have realised it was a mismatch. Not much different from booking a restaurant or a hotel room, the advice and reviews were out there if you took the time to look.

    Strongback - Well, I argued it made sense, that's not the same as saying I thought it would be a decent match. When the two fighters make a mint, the arena is a sell-out and the ppv records are bordering on record-breaking, how could it not make sense?

    captaincarrantuohil - A very eloquent post, many thanks. I agree, there was too much hype and not enough analysis across all the media platforms. And if Haye doesn't fight Klitschko next, then you might be right, maybe I will have been too ready to take him at his word. Let's wait and see.

    perfectBlagman - Can I ask if you have seen the Pacman fight? Margarito was massive in comparison and Pacquiao took him apart, for 12 rounds. It was brilliant, and if you can't take any joy from that performance then I suggest maybe trying out another sport.

  • Comment number 17.

    There is no doubt that Haye is powerful, But Harrison wasn't worthy of fighting for a European title never mind a World title. Klitscko was right, this was a buddy fight, Harrison needed a pay day and Haye raised some extra cash and beefed up his profile and it gave him a chance to strut around and make all sorts of claims. I do feel he is probably the best there is available for the Klitscko's to fight. Thye have beaten everything else out there. I think it is their destiny to unify the belts. Haye will probably land some shots but lets remember that when the fight was stopped against Lewis, Klitscko had won every round and Lewis was tiring rapidly, secondly Lewis refused a rematch and retired without fighting him again. Haye probably thinks he has a shot at these older guys, maybe, but they won't be plodders like Harrison and they can absorb a punch and maintain pressure on a tired opponent. Haye will need to go for it all cylinders firing, if he burns out..at least he can say he tried and was beaten by the one of the most dominant boxers of all time.

  • Comment number 18.

    Fellas, are we all not missing the point! Audley/Fraudley, call him what you will. The guy is a second rate boxer, we all know that! Pay day... hmmmm not sure why he deserved it! Major issue for me is that Haye is big time, and of we are not careful, we will never see it. Somebody needs to step in and stop the contract diatribe that the Klitchko's feel is acceptable. No rematch, no "if you beat my brother you have to fight me, then fight him again!" Where is the dignity in that? Man up Klitchko's! Can you beat Haye???? If you think the answer is yes... Put your money where your mouth is. If Haye loses, you were right! The boxing world will have so much more respect for you then! Sorry guys.. Rant over!

  • Comment number 19.

    So, "Negotiations are sure to be torturous" are they? Does that mean waterboarding and thumb screws are de rigeur?

    Or did you mean "Tortuous"?

  • Comment number 20.

    Sreich - No, I didn't mean 'tortuous', I meant 'torturous' (ie to cause mental anguish, agony or worry). 'Tortuous' wouldn't make sense as I finish the sentence with "hope and pray to the gods of boxing that a deal will be hammered out soon". Apparently Susie Dent's job is safe.

  • Comment number 21.

    How anyone can feel short changed is beyond me. I paid for the fight and got exactly what I expected. If you were expecting anything else other than what happened then more fool you for being taken in by the hype. I've followed Haye round the world for several years now but chose not to go to "his most high profile fight" on the basis Audley would freeze and Haye would demolish him, it wasn't worth the ticket price for what was ALWAYS going to be a one sided mauling.

    For those people having a go at David Haye for fight Audley in the first place, well if I were in a job where I routinely had to be punched in the face very hard by 18 stone men, I wouldn't be adverse to taking it easy one evening and getting paid loads in the process. Boxing is a business, Haye has more than earned the right to look out for number one after what he's already done in his career.

  • Comment number 22.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 23.

    Gardiola - I think you are bang on about the Klitchko's and the contracts they require people to sign. They are monopolising Heavyweight Boxing by insisting that if you beat one then you have to fight the other. Rematch clauses, fair enough they have always been there but I just cannot believe that for example, if Haye beat Vitali the WBC would allow their Champion to be dictated to on whom he should fight. It's crazy and the authorities need to grow a pair.

  • Comment number 24.

    I paid for it, knew it would be over quickly but hey...

    The highlight for me was, upon waiting for the pac man fight, hearing Ricky Hatton (Someone i loved watching) saying that Audley would look back ashamed and should have used his height/weight/size advantage better....somehow nissing the fact haye v Audley was PAc man v Hatton reprised....

    That said, Audley should walk away - he is a nice guy but this is not the business for him.
    Haye - like him or not, does what he says he will...i would take him to beat either Klitchko as well...and Heavyweight boxing will miss him when he has gone because he has the speed, physique, eloquence and style to unify the division and make boxing attractive to the mainstream again..

  • Comment number 25.

    Its funny.

    the number one most searched item in the uk on google today is

    "haye v harrison highlights"

  • Comment number 26.

    Hi Ben: spot on in your comment above re PacMan's fight. If you don't appreciate what went on during those 12 rounds, and the history behind it, look elsewere.

    The Fraudley and Haye bout was a further embarrassment to boxing. Haye must stop kidding himself and step up the level of opposition, if he wants to be a believable World Champion, particularly in such a poor era as far as the heavies are concerned.

    As for Audley...enough is enough. This is the gravestone sealing his very poor professional boxing career.

  • Comment number 27.

    Ben what do you think about haye's claims he and his family had money on the third round and how he could have knocked him out earlier but he betted on knocking him out in the third.

    Spotfixing or not?

    Apparently he kept it quiet that he would knock him out in the third round

    so how do you think the people who went along to the MEN feel that david haye secretly knew it would last 3 rounds?

  • Comment number 28.

    Audley Harrison lost his mental battle. A truly great amateur boxer he has never made it in the professional game, lacking the natural aggression needed to break an opponent's, like David Haye, spirit.

    Hype is a cruel game unless it is built on a least a semblance of truth. Last night's bout proved that romancing something for too long and with a lack of realism only makes delusion a very real probability.

    Audley please retire. You have given as much as you can but it is not the stuff required in the professional ring.

    As for David Haye, the Klitchkos have to put up and stop messing around with no hopers. They will also be fights worthy of the MEN. It is just a shame Audley didn't make a lot more of his chance to be really worthy last night, instead of being the heavyweight who never was.

  • Comment number 29.

    I paid to watch the fight last night and I'd pay it all over again to see Fraudley get finally ridiculed in the way he was. For those, like me, that have seen Fraudley from his 1st professional fight after he won the Olympics, it has been a long time coming and hopefully he will now finally retire as he is an absolute disgrace to the sport of boxing. For those that haven't followed him then you must have wondered what the hell went on last night and why he only threw one punch in 3 rounds - but that is him all over - he has always been like this...

    Just a shame that he is going to get paid for last night and as someone else pointed out - maybe he should give his purse to the cause he was supporting.... that would make up for his fraudulent attempt to be a boxing champion...

  • Comment number 30.

    29. At 12:33pm on 14 Nov 2010, Fraudley_A-Farce wrote:
    I paid to watch the fight last night and I'd pay it all over again to see Fraudley get finally ridiculed in the way he was. For those, like me, that have seen Fraudley from his 1st professional fight after he won the Olympics, it has been a long time coming and hopefully he will now finally retire as he is an absolute disgrace to the sport of boxing. For those that haven't followed him then you must have wondered what the hell went on last night and why he only threw one punch in 3 rounds - but that is him all over - he has always been like this...

    Just a shame that he is going to get paid for last night and as someone else pointed out - maybe he should give his purse to the cause he was supporting.... that would make up for his fraudulent attempt to be a boxing champion...

    ============

    i must admit, ive never followed his fights religiously but i would never have thought harrison would be as bad as he was last night

    how did his other previous fights go? was he as scared and timid and negative as he was last night..

    agree on the money issue,he should give it to that campaign which was on his t-shirt last night.

  • Comment number 31.

    Frank Warren questioning Haye's 'ethics' for betting on himself - I've heard it all now...talk about the pot calling the kettle black!!

    As for the fight, a farce and another nail in the coffin for the HW division.

  • Comment number 32.

    The only thing that surprised me about this particular fight is that it happened in the first place.
    I still remember how shocked I was when I first read that these 2 were going to meet.

  • Comment number 33.

    Ben,

    It 'makes sense' for the two fighters the promoters etc to make money but does it make sense for the average man on the street to be led to believe that there is a fight not to be missed happening, particularly when it comes with a £15 price tag.

    I chose not to watch the fight and went to a local boxing event instead. On my way home in the car I listened to the 5 Live post fight show and heard fans at the event being interviewed and people phoning in, the overwhelming sentiment was dissatisfaction and a feeling they had been cheated. I cannot see on what level this makes sense or is good for boxing. Do the promoters work from the premise that sports fans are so stupid they will forget in the future the bad taste currently inhabiting their mouth.

    I don't want to sound too aggressive or accusatory but this fight has gotten under my skin from day one and the more it was hyped the more it grated on me.

    Legally in work and play we are expected to conduct ourselves in a fair and reasonable manner, I am not sure if the media were fair to their readership in relation to this fight.

    The whole episode has just seemed dishonest to me. I am surprising myself though, there seems to be some semblance of an idealist still left in me.

  • Comment number 34.

    I said before this fight that I wouldn't waste my time or money on it. Seems like a lot of those that did are complaining, but what did they expect?

    In a funny way I'm actually slightly irritated by some of the stick Haye is getting now. The refrain of a made mark. The result was the better one and it's out of the way now, that's that.

    Still, at least Frank Warren gave me a good laugh today with his 'sword of truth and shield of British fairplay' routine about the betting. Always on a firm moral high ground.

  • Comment number 35.

    So glad Haye did the job we all wanted him to do, and that boxing needed him to do, now he has to man up a bit & perhaps give a bit in the negotiations - what does he value more, the big payday or the title of "undisputed"?

    On the other fight, Pacquiao proved himself beyond shadow of a doubt to be THE number 1 pound for pound fighter on the planet, Mayweather will run scared until hell freezes over & be remembered as a ducker of the big fights, whereas the Pacman will be remembered as an all-time legend of the ring, certainly the greatest in my lifetime.

  • Comment number 36.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 37.

    35. At 12:59pm on 14 Nov 2010, JoliVague wrote:

    "whereas the Pacman will be remembered as an all-time legend of the ring, certainly the greatest in my lifetime."

    --------------------------

    Couldn't agree more, tho i would say he's the best since the turn of this century as i may be a little older and list the Middles of Duran/Hagler/Leonard/Hearns as my favourite era..

  • Comment number 38.

    The night British boxing died:

    what a complete farce. i was one of those critics and was proved right.
    last night when Haye was interviewed i, immeditly as the wrods left his lips said the same thing as frank Warren. Haye could have taken harrison in the 1st 20 seconds of round 1 but why would he if he can wait and get all the extra money. spot fixing .. yes .

    harrison should give his money to charity (or a % at least ) he might recover some of his reputation that way.

    i did watch streaming and still feel jipped for the time wasted. i bet harrison doesnt even retire now.

  • Comment number 39.

    Good article Ben - sums up the the sentiments of the fight well. My only gripe would be to echo what others have said in relation to the role the media played in this pointless match up. No doubt the aftermath will see all and sundry claim that this was never more than a mismatch but i only wish that the media and journalists would devote half as much time to the more genuine match ups in the sport. As a long time fan of boxing I love to see the big match ups made where possible and to date Haye has been the antithesus of this. Hes by no means alone in that regard but hopefly the negativity that will follow this fight (in which Audley was frankly an embarrassment even as a third tier fighter) will mean that the public and media who drive the sport will now be a bit more demanding. I think everyone is united in their desire to see a genuine unification match up.

  • Comment number 40.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 41.

    First you say that the "essence" of boxing is people making a lot of money, then criticise Harrison for trying to do that? Seems like you're pretty dead set against Audley!!

  • Comment number 42.

    I was a bit naive in the way I used the word legally, I'll be more careful in future. I don't expect to see the comment reapearing.

  • Comment number 43.

    "Yes Ben, boxing is all about people making money, which is why any fool could have told you Pacquiao wasn't going to lose that fight last night. There is too much money to be made in a fight with Mayweather for that to happen. So, putting a stooge (a decent one admittedly) in front of him to guarantee him a new title does not make him one of the true greats in my opinion. Neither does his incredibly suspicious weight gain. We'll see when the Mayweather fight happens."

    PBF would not fight Pac at WW and he is considered too good for the rest at WW to make a competitive/PPV worthy fight, Pac moves up to his 8th weight and fights the number 2 ranked fighter in the class and gives away 17lbs (he already beat the no 1 LMW albeit at 145lb). People are still ragging on him.

    He is a credit to he sport and doing more for it at the minute more than anyone else.

    And what the hell is a decent stooge?

  • Comment number 44.

    To call Haye vs Harrison a fight is absurd. I do not feel duped as I did not purchase it. Harrison is an awful boxer who should be stripped of his licence or retire. Fighting for a world title and in all the pictures he looks scared. You could see it when he avoided eye contact with Haye.

    Pacquaio rolling of them power punch combinations was a thing of beauty. Fair play, to Margarito trying to make something of it but he was outclassed.

    Anyhow, on to next week for Williams vs Martinez 2. That should be a war.

  • Comment number 45.

    @4

    "Incredibly suspicious weight gain" ???

    mate - get yourself down to any decent gym and train hard, and you will see for yourself how easy it is to put on 15-20lbs of muscle with the right training, diet, attitude and motivation (and no you don't need any illegal drugs to do it either). I know this because I have done it myself.

    Do that training regime a few times over the course of a 15 year career (Manny was only a lad of 16 when he started out) and it's not hard to understand how you can go from a 16 year-old light flyweight (110lbs) to light middleweight (150lbs) aged 31 (he weighed in at 144.6 by the way)

    Fair enough ?

  • Comment number 46.

    Altough I ultiamtely felt Haye would be too strong, I have to admit I fell for the fact that it was Harrisons big shot and he must be willing to up his game..... he didn't!!!
    It was a poor account of himself and he certainly can't 'hold his head up high' as he wishes. Needs to take a long hard look at homself, anyone could of gone and ran away from Haye for 3 rounds - or as he did keep him at arms lenght without throwing punches - but a real man would have gone in their and gave eveerything he had, leaving everything on the canvas. DID YOU AUDREY I MEAN AUDLEY because it certainly didn't look like it, one right hand thrown no elusive and much hyped big left.
    I feel let down time and time again by boxing

  • Comment number 47.

    Its tempting to think after last nights finish the logical step is to get it on with the Klitchkos.

    But I think David Haye should think very carefully about fighting the Klitchkos at this point. After last night it seems clear that Haye isn't getting the progressive bouts he needs to take on those two. He simply needs to fight higher standard opponents. Do we really think Ruiz and Harrison are good preparation for the Klitchkos?

    When he does fight them he'll find them a startling jump in class and I worry whether he'll have the conditioning ringcraft for the longer lasting contests.

  • Comment number 48.

    @45

    Just to add to your very good reasoning, it was well known that Manny struggled to get down to the flyweight limit - and he was quite often overweight, forcing him to use heavier gloves, which were supposedly responsible for 2 of his 3 losses. Hence why Manny jumped a few weight classes after he lost his WBC Flyweight title. Then the weight he jumped is effectively 122lb. So really he's only gained 23lb over most of his career. So, PerfectBlagman I don't think he really needs the steroids. I for one will take him at face value - an eight-time world champion and a true gentleman of the sport.

  • Comment number 49.

    I should have really said that his main well-known career started at 122lb. Silly me!

  • Comment number 50.

    I can't believe more people didn't research the challenger's background before complaining after they bought it on PPV. Audley has always frozen in the headlights in any "big" match-up. The only time he's ever looked mildly impressive was in his rematch with Danny Williams when Williams came in at over 19 stone and looked like he'd been training with Mr Kipling, so no surprise that even a 2nd rate British-level heavyweight such as Harrison dispatched him in 3.

    This was always a mis-match waiting to happen.

    That said, it's about time the Klitschko brothers stopped holding heavyweight boxing to ransom and provided contracts that don't ensure multiple options and rematch clauses. If there's an emphatic win, no need for a rematch. Simple.

  • Comment number 51.

    The clues were there for all to see in Harrison's past bouts. He is a man renouned for his distaste for fighting, who had never faced a world class opponent.

    When Harrison fought Danny Williams for the frst time he spent most of the fight doing what he did in the first two rounds against Haye; he threw barely any punches, nothing with power behind it, and covered up.

    He doesn't like to fight full stop. He likes his opponents to be plodding journeymen with little agression so that he can tee up his jab and land his left at will, once his opponet becomes live he becomes frightened to get involved in anything.

    Losing to the likes of Rogan and scraping through on prize fighter, which wasn't even a gage of standings at domestic level (the likes of Chisora, Fury, and Dallas were nowhere to be seen) with a shot to pieces Danny Willams removed in the first round. He won by landing a big one on a blown up Cruiser who had been the clear agressor up until that point. His next fight he gets beaten up for 12 rounds, thowing little in return, and once again lands a desperate last minute left hook that Sprott should never have walked onto.

    The only way Harrison got the shot is because Haye and Booth knew that Harrison would create enough hype to catch the football fans and first timers. Those are the guys who parted with their hard earned money, those are the guys who fell for the badly written articles and Harrisons talk.

    Anyone who knew anything about boxing knew that this was a once sided beating and nothing else. Harrison was never going to compete against a man of Haye's explosive power and speed and had fought regularly at world level.

    I have no problems with Haye making this fight and making a killing. I feel a bit sorry for Harrison in that he can never live down this night and will become a by word for cowardis and failure.

    Anyone complaining that they felt cheated should have done some research into what they were buying because there was never any other result going to happen.

  • Comment number 52.

    Strongback - completely agree with every word you've said regarding the bout, never mind the emporer's new robe, this was his entire spring collection, thought this fight was lunacy from the get go, had the rancid stench of a big con job and I can't fathom how so many 'pundits' towed the line. The best most could muster up was that this was not much by way of a contest but it would be 'intriguing'. Absolute rubbish, short term gain for long term pain, there is no way that this bout will do anything but damage the credibility of boxing and in particular British boxing in the long run. Harrison lost to Rogan for crying out loud, what was he doing anywhere near a world title fight, a year ago if you'd even mentioned the possibility of him being in the same ring as one of the 4 major belt holders you would have been sectioned, but as soon as the fight was made the criticism only came in qualified drips and drabs, small wonder the people that organised the fight thought that they could get away with it.

    And for the record, I didn't watch or listen to the fight.

  • Comment number 53.

    I won't believe Haye wants to fight a klitschko until, I am sitting watching it. He is deluded in thinking he deserves 50-50.

  • Comment number 54.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 55.

    I don't understand why the BBC had to join in with the hype. Couldn't you just have ignored it?

  • Comment number 56.

    Harrison really is the most shameful excuse for a boxer I have seen.

    Fighters must be prepared to take some punishment in the ring and often have to give one to take one. Thats a given. Thats what justifies the zillions they make at the top.

    But look at Harrison's face every time Haye threw a punch. He is petrified!

    How the hell did anyone ever believe in this joker?

    As Ben alludes the c word (coward) is too strong for any man who climbs into that ring but boy does Harrison come close!

  • Comment number 57.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 58.

    Bigbaldboab - Pacquaio agreed to ALL the testing second time around and MW went into hiding and then released a video slating Pacquaio and his ethnicity. Is that man great?

    Pacquaio is a modern day great in this game and is humility is something that guys like Haye and Mayweather can learn from. Actions speak louder than words and it spoke volumes yesterday albeit different aspects for both Harrison and Pacquaio.

  • Comment number 59.

    Enough with this PED nonsense. It's as bad as Margarito and Rios mocking Roach's Parkinson disease.

    PacMan's fight was a magnificent display of skills, determination and courage. I do salute PacMan as the epitome, the personification of boxing at its best, on all possible levels. He was amazing, as simple as that. And a true, remarkable gentleman of the ring, in allowing a brave and battered Margarito to get to the final bell. Manny is the best of the best, no question about it.

    Now I really don't care about Mayweather indisputable skills: does he want to be remembered as a true great? Then prove it in the ring by facing the best opposition available at any given time, and not only those fights that make sense to you in terms of greatest financial gain at a very limited risk, as it has been the case since Gatti.

    The second part of Floyd's career is rather disappointing, cherry-picking mostly from a second-tier choice of available opponents. In contrast, just look at Manny's career going from strenght to strenght, facing anyone, anywhere. I said elsewhere that Floyd has the potential to beat them all, but he chose never to answer that question, and that makes a hell of a difference.

    Manny, on the other hand, will forever be an all-time great, both within and outside the ring, regardless of what happens if that fight is ever made.

    In fact, Floyd does need that fight, Manny does not. As simple as that.

  • Comment number 60.

    Im a fan of both Mayweather and Pacquiao which seems to be mutually exclusive with most people these days.

    The performance from Pacquaio last night was highly impressive but I dont think it can realistically be used as a weapon to attack Mayweather. Margarito was knocked out by Mosely who Floyd beat by winning almost every round against bar one in a victory that was equally impressive as Pacquiaos mauling of Margarito.

    I suppose its inneviteable that the blame game will be played unless these two meet in the ring but I find it disappointing that every one of their fights now is accompanied by this side show of bickering between the two sets of fans.

  • Comment number 61.

    You may as well have stuck a different spring in the punchball, attached arms and legs and wheeled that into the ring, 1 punch!

    Even when a real fight comes up punters are going to be wary. Take the micky, stuff your pockets, but don't be surprised fans lose interest.

  • Comment number 62.

    @ 4 PerfertBlagman,
    I'm with you that Haye/Harrison doesn't warrant serious comment. But can't agree Margarito was a "stooge" to enhance Pacman's reputation. Don't forget this is the guy (Margarito) who shattered De La Hoya's reputation well before Pacman put the nail in the coffin. Pacman was already one of the greats before this "eighth" weight division title - as if seven wasn't enough ! And he has achieved feats in boxing which will never be rivalled, so his reputation is absolutely justified.

    @ 57 Bigbaldboab, you are just throwing stones, without a shred of foundation, which you might as well aim at any other boxer arbitrarily. Floyd is a fantastic fighter too, but was also wrong to try and invent or impose a set of rules beyond the governing body's. Which he has happily competed under throughout his own succesful career - until now.

  • Comment number 63.

    Apparently we cannot discuss Manny's PED issues, I have been censored.

    We don't want to ask difficult questions....

    Anyway I refer you to some interviews by the BBC's Mike Costello with Victor Conte.

    "They test you before a fight and after a fight- one for performance-enhancing drugs and one for recreational drugs," said Conte.

    "But these athletes have advisors who understand that all you have to do is taper off the different species of drugs.

    "Until those who control the majority of the financial gain from boxing develop a true and genuine interest in reducing the use of performance-enhancing drugs, it will continue to be rampant."

    (http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/boxing/8485892.stm)

    Conte is a man in the know about these things and Mike Costello is a respected journalist... perhaps you'll have more trouble censoring this.

  • Comment number 64.

    I wouldn't be a huge fan of boxing but that fight was awful.I am glad I didn't waste my money buying it on Sky Box office.I feel sorry for those who did.The Pacquiao fight was well better.

  • Comment number 65.

    @60

    I see your point, and whilst I certainly agree that in terms of skills there is little to choose between the two (and indeed Floyd may even hold a slight advantage), I can also see why people - myself included - are taking sides.

    Mayweather does his best to alienate boxing fans when he is outside the ring. Beating up the mother of your kids before their eyes, the foul-mouthed racist rants at Manny, his unwillingness to engage in the fights people want to see to preserve his '0' defeats...this is in stark contrast to what Manny has to offer.

    So it must not come as a surprise that Floyd is attracting a barrage of criticism, particularly when he is perceived to be doing his best to stay well clear of Manny and always go for the safer option on the table.

  • Comment number 66.

    Good summary of the fight Ben. Harrison can obviously box - he showed that in the amateurs - but Booth's description of Harrison as not a fighter seems to be spot on the money.

    Having said that, I was surprised by Haye's power. It's one thing to get an early knockout in a slugfest with fighters' chins exposed. It's different when up against a guy over 3 stone heavier who has no intention of doing anything other than staying out of harms way. I still think he'll have his work cut out but maybe just maybe he can give the Klitschkos a run for their money.

  • Comment number 67.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 68.

    Harrison you are not a professional boxer and never will be so give it up you've got a wife and child look after them with the cash from last nights bout!! I have never seen a fighter who was so scared to be hit, in fact my mum who 84 could have put in more punches on haye than the ONE which you connected with. Sorry but your game is up you've had your pay day now go away and live your life out of boxing.

  • Comment number 69.

    Audley Harrison had his biggest chance to seize the moment since his Olympic win in 2000, yet was undone by reverting to type. As 'habit forms character' Audley came to the ring with a tentative start, giving Haye time to measure his jab and unload the bombs in round three.Harrison has size, power, reasonable stamina and genuine punching ability, yet has always been over analytical and verbally defensive, too concerned with 'proving a point' instead of just concentrating on the boxing. An Olympic champion should not shape a pro career by fighting journeymen, because Audley always had class. The problem was always the expectation of a world title , before he had even fought the likes of Sprott, Williams or Sexton. This is like a potential Ali or Lewis fighting journeymen and expecting to arrive at world class...it can't happen. You cannot hope to beat Haye, Klitschko or Sam Peter unless you've been regularly fighting or sparring someone of their calibre. Audley needed to extend himself and raise his game against good Europeans, or train as if he wanted to be in the ring. Too often, he looked as if he had already 'arrived',when in reality he was fighting guys way below his ability.However, Harrison fought the world's best heavyweight and has done a lot in his life he can be proud of. He is a winner as a man because he has overcome many things and has no need to prove himself to anybody.

  • Comment number 70.

    I have said all along that Haye was dodging a 50-50 split with the Klitschkos, and with the average British public having their heads in the sand, didn't believe me.

    Haye will be no match for Vitali and might just knock out Wladimir, but he is waiting for Vitali to be over 40 when he is past his best and then take him on. Its all very calculating, just like Calzaghe took on a washed up Hopkins and Roy Jones Junior for a big pay day and then go and tell everyone how is one of the greatest middleweights of all time because he went through his career undefeated. People who know boxing know this is not true. Its not how many fights you have lost, its how much quality opposition you have faced in your career. And Haye in that regard comes up well short, and has faced no one of the highest caliber yet (with the exception of Mormeck at cruiserweight possibly).

    So for now, Haye is just another hype, unless he destroys one of the Klitschkos, then I may be holding my hands up. But even then, these guys are already very old........

  • Comment number 71.

    This was a mismatch from the moment the bout was announced. Anyone who fell for the unpleasant but predictable hype is very naive. Boxing will remain in this rut as long as we have at least 4 so-called "World Champions" at each weight. And don't even get me started on the multiplication of weight divisions...

  • Comment number 72.

    Mr Chelsea - I wouldn't pay too much heed to be honest. If someone's good enough to pick their round, then good luck to them, but I reckon if Haye could have taken him out earlier - ie if Audley had attacked him - he would.

    Strongback - I don't think anyone has the right to feel cheated. As I said before, if you book a hotel room or a meal in a restaurant it's up to you to do your research. Those who did their research would have known Harrison didn't stand a chance. More fool those who got sucked in.

    Manos_de_Piedra - I agree with you, and that is the one shame of this fight, in that it highlights how better match-ups are so often ignored. That's to take up with the editors of corporations, newspapers and websites. Oh yeh, and why is it that some people aren't able to like Pacman and Mayweather - they're both brilliant.

    rafaman - Where exactly have I criticised Audley for trying to make money? That's the one part of his game which is world-class.

    BounceTheThug/Tarzan_Pancake - Totally agree, anyone who bought the fight can have no complaints. When I want to book a hotel I go on TripAdviser, I don't just book up and hope for the best.

    Jonnyaiston - Why is Haye deluded for wanting 50-50? He can create just as big numbers as either Klitschko, from what I'm hearing Saturday's fight is expected to be the third biggest ppv seller in British history.

    stopthepress - Well, it depends what you mean by the BBC "joining in with the hype". I made sure never to suggest it would be anything like a close fight, in fact I actually said otherwise in my final pre-fight blog.



  • Comment number 73.

    65. At 4:59pm on 14 Nov 2010, lucabiason wrote:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I will agree with you that on a personal level, Pacquaio comes across as the more likeable guy.

    Although it must be asked whether giving Margarito a big pay day and easy route back into the sport after he was convicted of illegal hand wraps is altogether morally correct.....

    I just enjoy watching both guys fight as they are terrific athletes and genuine class boxers tht fight high quality opposition. I just find it frustrating when people seem to be more interested in slating them and using their fights to detract from the other ma.

    For example after the Mosely fight there was no shortage of Manny fansclaiming Floyd only fought him because he was washed up, old, over the hill etc yet these same people would say that the Margarito (who was destroyed by the so called washed up Mosely) is by far the greater challenge etc

    Boxing negotiations and contracts have long been a source of mystery to me. How two guys can struggle to come to an agreement to split over 100 million between them is beyond my realms of understanding. Ideally in these situations when both guys proclaim to be 100% confident of victory you would like to think that they would take 40% each with the extra 20% going to the winner but even this sems to be too far fetched. I dont think either fighter is afrais of the other as the names on their respective c.vs would indicate they are not afraid of challenges - I just think its a genuine case of two egotistical camps with greedy money men involved being too unreasonable and unwilling to find a comprimise.

  • Comment number 74.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 75.

    @73

    Like you, I too like watching them both.

    As said, there is very little to pick between the 2 of them, and that is the one fight with a very unpredictable outcome. None of them has ever fought anyone remotely close to what the other has to offer, so it would be a fascinating fight.

    I would have been happy with a life ban for Margarito (Manos de Jeso?) and his pre-fight antics mocking Roach did only add fuel to my personal fire, but I also acknowledge that once in the ring he put on a remarkable display of guts and bravery, and proved to be a tough nut to crack.

    The issue one can raise with Floyd is that he does not seem to have taken head-on what was perceived to be the very best challenge on the table (and that does not refer to Manny alone) even though he has enough boxing intelligence and talent to school them all. Compare and contrast to Pacquiao.

    This is what personally angers me about Floyd. He is a once-in-a-lifetime talent who in my opinion has not fully stepped up to the mark from Gatti onwards.

    As for the baffling universe of boxing contracts, there are some very meaningful insights into that in a series of articles by Thomas Hauser on secondsout.com, which I do recommend.

  • Comment number 76.

    I did'nt expect Harrison to win the fight but I thought at least he would have been competitive for a few rounds and gave his all, after all he was fighting for the richest prize in sport.

    Instead he pawed meekly with his jab which was pratically non existent thus nullifying any advantage his height and reach may have given him .
    As soon as he was caught clean he didn't want to know a poor display .

    As for Haye he did what he had to do and clearly for me he is the best heavyweight in the world. I firmly believe he has bloomed at the right time, the Klitchko brothers best years are behind them and have looked lacklustre in recent outings. Haye will have too much for them I think but at least these guys will go out with a bang not a wimper.

  • Comment number 77.

    Anyone who is now falling for Haye/Booth's HayeMaker Propaganda machine about 'contracts' with the Klitschkos should realise that both sides confirmed that Haye was already offered the 50/50 deal of worldwide income after the Ruiz fight to fight Wladimir. Instead of accepting, they then proceeded to demand that the Klitschkos break their German TV contract, imagine if the Klitschkos did the same and told Haye to break his contract with Sky?

    If you dont believe it, all the interviews are on Youtube. Both Booth, Haye, and Wladimir and Bernde Boente stated the 50/50 was on the table and Hayemaker refused because the Klitschko's wouldnt break their TV contract (which would have probably led to god knows what in legal fees).

  • Comment number 78.

    75. At 5:42pm on 14 Nov 2010, lucabiason wrote:
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    I agree that Floyd is a primarily concerned with his bank balance and less with his lasting legacy in comparison to Pacquiao and hes never been particulary shy about that.

    However I think his self confessed love of the green has lead to a situation whereby hes unfairly criticised for his oppsotion. He beat De la Hoya and Hatton before Pacquiao for instance and fought Oscar at the more disadvantageos lightmiddle and Hatton when Hatton was unbeaten.

    Mosely and Marquez were two guys that were ranked in the top 5 by the Ring when he met them although I would conced that Marquez at welter was going to take the gloss off the win. Mosely was by most accounts held as the main man at Welter though having beaten Margarito previously.

    Aside from Pacquiao I cant think of too many guys that he hasnt faced that would either be viable or would pose a real challenge. Small arguments could be made for Cotto and Williams respectively but Williams in reality was a long shot and never likely to remain at welter long and I dont think you can expect Floyd to realistically chase him up the weights. Cotto probably could have been done post Hatton but his los to Margarito and then later Pacquiao meant that the fight was unlikely.

    If you take Pacquaio post Morales and Mayweather post Gatti then I think the recent records of the two fighters are pretty comparable. I think Flyd just comes across worse because of his flaunting of cash and his rlative inactivity and numerous mini retirements.

  • Comment number 79.

    Klitschko should be next match for Haye now

    Lets hope its better than Saturday's boxing match, if it happens

  • Comment number 80.

    @ 63 Bigbaldboab

    Conte raises very valid issues, and lets face it, boxing is not a case example of a well governed sport.

    But your own points would be better received (and probably not censored) if not pitched as a snide attack, without ANY evidence, on one boxer in particular - rather than the sport in general.

    The result is that you come across as prejudiced, rather than appreciating boxing entertainment in one of the highest forms it has yet been presented. And with the implicit rejection of the possibilty that Pacman's rivals could be up to no good with PEDs either.

    An open mind is always a more attractive quality.....

    @ 75 lucabiason,

    I could not agree more

  • Comment number 81.

    @78

    Hi buddy,

    Yes, you may be right, but we may have to agree to disagree on this last one as I feel that PacMan did not shy away from anyone, in spite of his size disadvantage, whereas Floyd was more sneaky.

    You see, I think had Floyd fought the likes of Cotto, Williams, Margarito and Mosley (in 2005, not 2010) and above all Pac-Man when they were all there ready for him, then it may have been a more legitimate claim. Would he have beaten them all? Very, very likely. And in that instance, I'd have nothing to say against his claim as best p-4-p.

    You are certainly right that Mosley was seen as a very legitimate opponent, and I was mesmerised by how Mayweather completely "outeverythinged" him. Then afterwards I saw Mosley with Mora and...well, I no longer know what to think, although any fight is in itself a different story. I do feel the Margarito win flattered Shane somewhat, though.

    Of course speculations will never end. For example, Floyd had some issues with Zab, who in turn was beaten up by Cotto. Would have Cotto beaten up Mayweather? Very unlikely, but I would have loved to see it!

    An argument could be made to Mayweather's supreme skills, in that Floyd has achieved such a level that no-one has managed to test him to the limit. Then again, did he really put himself in that position by picking the very best available? It's a bit of a vicious circle, isn't it?

    Again, and I really want to stress this: I am not saying that Mayweather has been fighting 'bums', as I am sure for many revered boxers in history you can find an argument pro/against the opposition they faced - although in the eras with one belt and one belt only, it was quite difficult to hide.

    I do believe he is a one-in-a-lifetime fighter, who has taken the elegance of boxing to its highest level. It's just that I don't think that Floyd's primary parameter has been beating whoever was deemed to be most difficult opponent at any given time of the second part of his career, and that disappoints me a bit.

    I also want to reiterate that I am more than sure that he has the full package to beat them all. My point is that I perceive that those people I did mention in the 1st tier (who indeed have their limits, as we have seen) would have arguably posed a greater degree of difficulty than the ones Floyd did actually face.

  • Comment number 82.

    8 titles in 8 weight classes I thought?

    He could have battered Audley for a Ninth had Audley fluked the Haye fight ... althought the only way Audley could have won was by boring Haye to death.

  • Comment number 83.

    I have to be honest and admit I bought into some of Harisons hype, simply because of the sole reason his entire life and career was on the line, so I at least expected the Harison that destroyed Danny Williams to show up. Instead we got an even more lacklustre Audley that showed up against Sprott in their 1st fight.

    Everyone has their good and bad days, but in the fight of your life, you have to at least try and give it your best shot, like Danny Williams did against Vitali Klitscko. Danny Williams tempereament is very questionable too but against Klitschko, by far his biggest fight, he did put in a brave performance.

    The biggest person Harison let down last night was himself. He expected to survive against Haye for 6 rounds without throwing a punch, what kind of tactics is that?

    He should've just thought this is my last chance, sod it, and just punched his heart out, so what if he got caught and lost, thats much better than throwing 1 jab over 9 minutes and then losing.

    If Harison had 1% of Margarito's heart, the fight may have gone past 3 rounds. What a brave performance Margarito gave last night, and Manny Pacquiao, could he be the greatest fighter ever to have walked the earth? In his early days he had a few hiccups and learning curves but Roach has turned him into arguably the best fighter ever. The way he is going up in weights and destroying top quality fighters I don't think has ever happened before.

  • Comment number 84.

    Well I'm glad Audley got quick beating, which we all knew he would. I actually feel slightly bad for him and how down he appears in all the post match interviews. Despite his "performance" it does seem he really did put the hours in during his training camp. Still, its not the dog in the fight, its the fight in the dog and Audley (as a professional boxer) doesn't seem to have it. Its a shame but here's hoping he retires and we never here from him again.

  • Comment number 85.

    *hear

  • Comment number 86.

    Please don't sensor.

    My main point previously was: How can Pacquiao be such a likable guy if he is not willing to change the state of boxing and allow random drug test up to the eve of a fight? Something he could/should have in last nights fight?

    Can anyone not applaud what Mayweather is doing which is to attempt to clean-up a sport with a dirty history (i.e Mosely).

  • Comment number 87.

    Ben

    I'm not trying to be clever but when I want to get a review of a restaurant or a movie I look in a newspaper, call me old fashioned if you like.

    It will all come out in the wash I'm sure.

    Haye now needs a credible fight, not too many will disagree with that.

  • Comment number 88.

    Let me add, to Mosley's credit he TOOK the random test for the Mayweather fight...it's down to you PAC!

  • Comment number 89.

    Referring to desertwalker's comment (number 70)...certainly fair and valid points here. However, Calzaghe was 47-0 and beat Eubank, Lacy, Kessler etc. Roy Jones would have been trouble 10 or 12 years ago...but Calzaghe's clinical dismantling of Lacy proved him to be the real thing, without a doubt.

    Also, regarding Haye...don't forget the veteran dangerman Carl Thompson knocked him out sparco at cruiserweight...so he has fought warriors.However, everybody is forgetting about Dave Tua..genuine 12 round stamina, brutal power, unstopped, iron chin. Haye lands his big punches off balance and Tua would end it for him, no question, if he did that in a match.

  • Comment number 90.

    On the Haye fight/execution: in all my time watching pro boxing seen a fighter (Harrrison) throw a jab and make a scared face because he connected!

  • Comment number 91.

    "This is no disrespect to Haye but I think that boxing purists always knew that the real boxing action was taking place across the Atlantic."

    Wouldnt go that far. Just as many people were making out the Manny fight was gonna be a close one when in reality Margo was always going to take a beating. The guy is tailor made for Manny. Fits nicely into that come forward plodder format that Roach likes ala Cotto, Clottey and Hatton

    It was a stunning performance from Manny but the fact it was for a world title was an absolute joke. Mannys first fight at the weight, Margo shamed and been out of the top area for over a year and even then he got battered last time out by Mosley. The sooner people like Arum and King are out of boxing the better well all be

  • Comment number 92.

    everybody is forgetting about Dave Tua..genuine 12 round stamina, brutal power, unstopped, iron chin. Haye lands his big punches off balance and Tua would end it for him, no question, if he did that in a match.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Tua in his pomp would have been too much for Haye in my opinion but looking at his last few fights it is clear that Tua is well past his sell by date. He fought a draw with Monte Barrett in his last fight with many suggesting Barrett was unlucky not to get the nod. Remember Haye destroyed Barrett although Two Gunz did shake Haye up with a good punch followed by an illegal one when Haye was on his backside.

  • Comment number 93.

    People should have saved their £15 pounds, and watched "New Moon" instead.

  • Comment number 94.

    I did pay for the so called "Fight", Best entertainment of the night 1.The Groves Vs Anderson bout 2. Even Big Frank calling audley, ordinary

  • Comment number 95.

    @strongback

    re Tua being too much for Haye in his "pomp". What pomp. Tua was never anything other than a big puncher. Haye would be too fit and too fast. He's a clever fighter. He wouldn't fight Tua's game.

  • Comment number 96.

    Harrison just looked like a lost soul in that ring, and just looked clueless. I felt so sorry for him, I wish the referee had stopped the fight a minute earlier. Retire. You're no more a boxer than I am.

  • Comment number 97.

    Don't get me wrong Livingstone- I think Calzaghe was excellent- but legendary status- a resounding no. The dismantling of Lacy was indeed impressive. But Lacy never did much in the middleweight division after that defeat, even if he was regarded by Ringside Magazine as the most exciting and hottest young prospects in that weight category. That tag was never justified and as it turns out, the Lacy victory will be considered another victory against a journeyman. Had Lacy dominated his division, there would be a big case for Calzaghe being mentioned alongside the greats in hindsight. Same thing with Kessler, he didn't do much in his division, even Cazaghe fought him in his prime. Chris Eubanks was probably his best victory in his young career (but he was also past his sell by date) after his war with Nigel Benn.

    All in all, I don't think Calzaghe's resume is particularly impressive in spite of his undefeated record.

  • Comment number 98.

    I am just watching the Pacquiao fight on Sky. This fight against Margarito is going straight in to the best 20 or so fights of all time surely Ben? Is that right? Bloody hell. I wish Manny would divulge whereabouts in the Universe he came from; he's certainly not of the same species/genus as a certain Audley Harrison Esq. Actually, strike the esquire bit...

  • Comment number 99.

    "Strongback - I don't think anyone has the right to feel cheated. As I said before, if you book a hotel room or a meal in a restaurant it's up to you to do your research."

    At least when you book a hotel room you know you're getting a room of some description. And when you book a meal in a restaurant you know you're getting something to eat of whatever quality. People last night payed for a fight....

    and they're still waiting for it :D

  • Comment number 100.

    Having trouble understanding why some people are so keen to run down boxing in general and see this as the death knell etc.

    The irony is that such an obviously dud fight (as mentioned you didn't have to be a rocket scientist to pick the outcome of the fight 9 times out of 10)has been such a hit, both in terms of ppv (what other sporting event other than football would generate such sales?) and general public interest pre/post fight. This despite many of the national newspapers and BBC (tv not radio or web)+ ITV offering relatively little coverage in the build up.

    The frustrating thing is there is real potential for boxing to be as big as it was in back in the 80s when on terrestial tv, although without that exposure hard to see how this potential can be unlocked. Maybe it's destined to remain a very popular niche sport occasionally capturing the attention of a wider audience, and given what 2011 could serve up that seems a bit of a shame.

 

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