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Boxing | International

Buffalo wants rematch in Durban



Francois Botha is hoping to fight Sonny Bill Williams in Durban in December.

The South African heavyweight who lost to Williams in Brisbane last week also revealed on Wednesday that he had undergone a drug test at the Lancet Laboratories in South Africa, which came back negative.

"I landed in South Africa on the Sunday, and the next day I went for the tests, and it came back clean," he said.

"I sent the results back to Australia and New Zealand for them to see for themselves.”

Australian newspapers reported earlier this week that Botha, a former IBF champion, had tested positive for illegal substances in tests done before the fight against the All Black rugby star.

"The only people who could have done those tests were the Australian Boxing Commission, and they didn't even do it," Botha said on Wednesday.

Nicknamed The White Buffalo, Botha said Williams had to get back in the ring with him to redeem himself.

"If he wants to regain his honour and win back the favour of the people, he will have to get back in the ring with me.

"There are already talks that the fight will be in December in South Africa and I am hoping for one in Durban."

Shortly after the doping reports surfaced, John Hogg, a member of the Australian Boxing Federation, denied knowing about any tests.

Botha has claimed that he was offered the equivalent of more than R1.3 million to “throw” the fight against Williams.

"It’s the first time in my life that I have come across something like this. Back in 1999 (when he was knocked out by Mike Tyson) I could have thrown a fight and made millions of dollars, but now they want me to do this against this upstart? It is not worth it."

Botha said reducing the fight from twelve to ten rounds was tantamount to match-fixing.

He said when they initially started negotiating for the bout, scheduled to take place in November last year, it was agreed it would be over ten rounds. The fight was rescheduled after Williams underwent surgery for a muscle injury in October.

Botha said Williams's management had applied for the bout to be upgraded to a WBA international title fight.

"I met with Stan Christodoulou (the WBA representative in South Africa) and he said there could be no WBA title fight with only ten rounds. So the fight is not legal, and I don't want the fight on my record anyway."



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