Boxing


After Saturday’s “Challenge” Of David Haye, Does Audley Harrison Deserve To Have His Purse Withheld? The British Boxing Board Of Control May Take Action

By James Slater - Fight fans, especially those in the UK, are still hopping mad over the pathetic non-effort the big-talking Audley Harrison gave on Saturday in the biggest fight of his professional life. There really is no need to repeat how “A-Farce,” sorry, “A-Force” was unwilling to throw any serious punch the whole two-and-a-half rounds the “fight” with David Haye lasted - enough scorn has been poured on the 39-year-old.

However, Harrison may now find himself feeling even worse after the bout; due to how The British Boxing Board of Control are reported to be looking into whether or not they should withhold some or all of his fight purse..

Harrison “earned” well over a £million on Saturday night, but now, according to BBB of C secretary Simon Smith, some, or maybe even all, of Audley’s money may be withheld.

“It is a very difficult course to take to stop someone getting paid when they have just frozen,” Smith said. “But rescinding some or all of Harrison’s purse is certainly something we will have to sit down and consider. It was such a let-down for the 22,000 people at the MEN Arena and the thousands watching at home.

“We have withheld purses in the past, on many occasions, when we feel a fighter has not tried.”

So, should Harrison get his money or not? Did the big, skilful southpaw “freeze,” or was he in the ring on Saturday with the intention all along of merely collecting a nice retirement payday? For what it’s worth, I think Harrison did freeze, or bottle it. I do believe Harrison, in the lead-up to the fight, honestly thought he could and would win. But, as soon as he got in there and realised who and what he was up against, he had that all too familiar mental blockage - as we have seen time and again from Audley in the ring.

Never a natural fighter, not at pro level anyway, the former Olympian has frozen and been unable to perform before; it’s just that on Saturday he did it on the biggest of stages after talking the fight of his life beforehand. Maybe the fairest thing The Board could do would be to withhold some, but not all, of Harrison’s purse. His effort sure didn’t warrant over a £million, did it?

The man who beat Harrison, David Haye, feels his former rival should be paid. Speaking on a breakfast TV show earlier today, an unmarked (of course!) Haye said Harrison should get his cash due to how he took some powerful shots in that 3rd-round before falling and then eventually being stopped by the referee.

But it will be interesting to read what ESB readers think: should Harrison wind up with nothing after Saturday’s dismal affair? Or should the man who will now retire, hopefully at least, get his wages?

Article posted on 16.11.2010



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