Shouting match ends boxing bout

GEORGE HEAGNEY
Last updated 11:30 02/12/2013
Stew Chambers and Billy Meehan
GRANT MATTHEW/Fairfax NZ

FIGHTING WORDS: Trainer Stew Chambers, centre, and organiser Billy Meehan exchange words during the bout between Ata Fakalelu and Frankie Bryant.

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Billy Meehan's Make a Difference Fight Night had 14 bouts in the ring on Saturday night, and just about had a 15th outside it.

The main event was the bout between Frankie Bryant and Ata Fakalelu, but during the fourth and final round it looked like a scrap would kick off between the support crews.

Fakalelu knocked Bryant down and it appeared as if he was going to jump on Bryant, so referee Ricky Bushell grabbed Fakalelu to hold him back.

Fakalelu's trainer Stew Chambers, from Palmerston North's Fight Shop NZ, jumped on the ring, but was pulled down by organiser Meehan.

It looked like something was going to spark, with people running in from all over the arena, but security quickly intervened to ensure nothing broke out.

The boxing was stopped while the fracas on the sideline was sorted out.

Meehan didn't want to make much of it, but said the Fight Shop had brought Fakalelu with illegal hand wraps for a corporate fight night and he was 10kg heavier than he was supposed to be at 105kg instead of 95kg, he said.

They also had more numbers in their corner than they were supposed to.

"They were breaking them [rules] all night. They were doing their typical attitude stuff, then Frankie got knocked over; the referee was trying to save Frankie. Their corner jumped on on the ropes and I went down and got him off the ropes."

Meehan said that could not be done at a corporate fight night and pointed out it wasn't a cage fight.

"For use of a better word, it's a gentleman's game, not that brutal animal kick- boxing stuff."

Chambers said he thought the fight was over with Bryant out cold so he jumped up on the ring to get a better look, before Meehan grabbed him in what he said was "unprofessional".

Meehan said it was over as quickly as it started and joked "it was part of the show to keep people fired up".

Some of the crowd weren't happy though, and Fakalelu received a few boos after it was read out that he had won.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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