Official complaints laid over Sonny Bill fight

Last updated 12:33 13/02/2013

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Four complaints have been made to the Commerce Commission about Sky TV related to Friday's boxing match between former All Black Sonny Bill Williams and Francois Botha.

Williams won a contentious unanimous points decision over the South African in their World Boxing Association heavyweight title fight, helped by  the bout being confined to 10 rounds rather than the advertised 12.

While the TAB is refunding some bets as a result of the fight being shorter than advertised, Sky has said it will not be refunding the $40 customers paid to watch.

Commission spokesperson Allanah Kalafatelis said the four complaints made about the bout under the Fair Trading Act had yet to be assessed.

Consumer NZ magazine consumer adviser Maggie Edwards said there were several avenues people could pursue if they felt they had been hard done by regarding the 10-round fight.

"I would encourage everyone to keep laying complaints with the Commerce Commission if they felt that they were misled. They can do that quite easily on their website. I would also suggest that they consider contacting the Advertising Standards Authority if they felt they may have been misled by the adverts for the fight.''

There were two principals of basic principles of the advertising code of ethics which may have been breached including: "no advertisement should impair public confidence in advertising'' and "no advertisement should be misleading or deceptive or likely to mislead or deceive the consumer'', she said.

Advertising Standards Authority chief executive Hilary Souter said they had not yet received any formal complaints.

"If there is an advertisement that promoted the coverage on the basis it was 12 rounds, then that is something we could look into if we received a complaint'', she said.

Columnist Mark Reason has invited boxing enthusiast Sir Robert Jones to take on Sky on behalf of the customers.

But Sir Robert, who has described the promotion for the fight as embarrassing and dishonest, said he would not be taking on Sky.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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