Sonny Bill Williams stripped of boxing belts
December 15, 2013
Sonny Bill Williams feels the force of Francois Botha © Getty Images
World Cup-winner Sonny Bill Williams has been stripped of his boxing belts.
Reuters claims the former All Black has lost them after he failed to defend his world and New Zealand heavyweight titles. The 28-year-old has suspended his boxing career to focus on rugby league and this has caused the World Boxing Association to declare his win over Francois Botha in February 'vacant'.
New Zealand Professional Boxing Association has also taken Williams' heavyweight belt as he has not responded to calls for him to defend his title.
"We haven't heard a thing back and, personally, that's rude," Lance Revill, the NZPBA president, told NZ Newswire. "He's not even said he's received the challenge and that they're going to think about it. If that was the case we'd hold off, but we've got no choice now but to strip the title."
Williams is currently playing for the Sydney Roosters in the NRL but rumours persist regarding a switch back to union in time for the 2015 World Cup.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Ireland have the world sitting up and taking notice - and rugby's structure in Europe will aid their Rugby World Cup bid, writes John Mitchell
Where does Italy's win over Scotland rank among their successes in the Six Nations? Scrum Sevens investigates
The tone was set early on in Dublin as a more clinical Ireland made England pay. All is not lost, however, argues Phil Vickery
Monday Maul takes in retirement talk, England reshuffles, France's unfair advantage and Scotland's communication breakdown