Botha a 'sore loser', says Khoder Nasser after fight-fix allegations


Sonny Bill Williams's manager, Khoder Nasser, has described Francois Botha as a "sore loser" following allegations that he'd been offered money to throw the fight.

Speaking on New Zealand radio, the South African heavyweight accused Nasser of offering a $150,000 bribe to throw the WBA international heavyweight bout on Friday in Brisbane.

Botha told LiveSport radio on Wednesday that he was picked up from his hotel last Tuesday night and taken to a park where his phone was confiscated.

During the walk in the park, which he described as ‘‘very nice’’, Nasser offered him the money to lose the fight, he alleges.

Nasser strongly denied Botha's extraordinary claims.

"I think he [Botha] is still in a daze," Nasser said. "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 [fight fixing allegations]. What is next?

"The fact the media is loving this sore loser must be unprecedented, the media is siding with a guy who has got sour grapes.

"He has got to come to terms with the reality that he got his ass whipped by a guy [Sonny Bill Williams] who had had only five fights.

"It is all well and good to come out with all these allegations after, but where's his manhood? Why wasn't it brought out the day before? 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?"

Williams won the fight in controversial circumstances. He was awarded a points decision but the fight ended after 10 rounds, despite earlier promotion saying it was a 12-round fight.

‘‘I got a call on the Tuesday evening, right after the drug testing,’’ Botha told Live Sport from South Africa.

‘‘They said I was being picked up and I had to be alone.

‘‘So they picked me up - and I told my trainer where I’m going - and they drove me and as we stopped at the park where my cellphone was confiscated and given to the guy in the car.

"I was being walked and during this walk I was made an offer, at that stage, of $150,000 to throw the fight.

‘‘Everything there, I wasn’t supposed to win. Everything was against me ... drug testing, 12 rounds ...’’

Botha alleged the man who made the offer was Nasser.

‘‘I just said no, I can’t do this,’’ Botha said. ‘‘I’m a Christian, I cannot do this.’’

Botha says he told a close friend of the approach when he returned to his hotel after the meeting.

There have been allegations this week that Botha failed a drugs test on the eve of the fight, but the South African claims he had another test on his arrival back in South Africa and passed.

Fairfax Media reported the 44-year-old submitted a urine sample last Tuesday which indicated the presence of phentermine, a banned stimulant.

But Botha said the test was conducted by a relative of Nasser’s.

‘‘This was done by Khoder Nasser's brother or his nephew, somebody like that - a relation to him,’’ he told Live Sport.

‘‘They called me on the Tuesday, I did the drug testing in the morning and the way I went and did the drugs testing it was suspicious probably because it was a small room.

‘‘I did the urine and I've done other drugs test in my career and you usually do sample A and sample B. It gets sealed ... the same with the blood. This wasn't done, I only did one test and the blood was not regulated.

‘‘As far as I know only the Boxing Commission of Australia can do this test and it wasn't done by the Boxing Commission of Australia.’’

Botha said he was ‘‘set up right from the beginning’’.

‘‘They would have thought I’m way past my prime, I’m going downhill, but when they saw me and saw I was in better shape they thought, ‘OK, this is maybe a risk we are taking’.’’

Botha claimed he was meeting with a World Boxing Association representative on Thursday in an attempt to get the fight declared a no contest.

The bout was billed as a WBA international heavyweight bout. It was expected to go 12 rounds but it was just 10 rounds - much to the chagrin of Botha, who said he planned to stop Williams in the 11th or 12th rounds.

Williams said he and Botha knew too well that their bout was scheduled for 10 rounds - and he was backed by Botha's promoter, Thinus Strydon.

"They both knew that their fight, which was billed as a 12-rounder at their weigh-in on Friday, was actually a 10-rounder," Strydom told Sportlive in South Africa.

"The promoter negotiated with the WBA for the international belt, and it was agreed, but the promoter did not change Botha's contract from 10 to 12 rounds .

"Five minutes before Francois entered the ring, the fight supervisor came to me and said the contract says 10 rounds and he said it will be a 10-rounder. I never told Francois that because he knew it.

with Fred Woodcock, Fairfax NZ

This story Botha a 'sore loser', says Khoder Nasser after fight-fix allegations first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.