SBW, Gallen agree fight terms

All Blacks codehopper Sonny Bill Williams has a highly anticipated boxing bout with Paul Gallen ready to roll.

The terms have been agreed between Williams' promoter, Khoder Nasser, and Gallen's people. They just need to work out where the fight will be shown in Australia.

Nasser has a meeting scheduled with Stan chief executive Mike Sneesby. Stan is an Australian streaming company launched in 2015 and is a joint venture ofNine Entertainment Co and Fairfax Media.

Nasser often talks to former Nine boss David Gyngell. The idea to involve Stan may have come through that relationship. Nasser has had a 15-year relationship with Main Event, an arm of Australian pay TV company Foxtel, but he is happy to explore new avenues.

"For too long Main Event has been able to dominate because they are a monopoly," Nasser said. "My aim is to get the best possible deal for the athletes and I'd be excited to do that with Stan."

Nasser had a heated exchange with Foxtel executive Brian Walsh last week and after being loyal to Main Event he is now looking around.

"We gave Main Event their No.1-grossing and rating programme (Mundine-Green fight one)," Nasser said.

The Mundine-Green rematch did huge business for Main Event as well and it dwarfed the recent Jeff Horn-Manny Pacquiao fight. The Horn fight was given unprecedented promotion; far greater than any Mundine fight.

"Main Event thought the Horn-Pacquiao fight would get 200,000 (viewers) ... it got closer to 50,000," Nasser said. "Our show will deliver ... The interest I've had in Sonny fighting Gal is huge from the general public. I'm excited to talk to Stan about this. Who knows what it could lead to for boxing or other sports in this country."

At worst, the SBW-Gallen fight would be a great exercise in brand building because the interest in the two athletes is significant and it would build up during the summer months where, outside of the Ashes, there is little to talk about for a story-hungry Australian media.


And while on SBW, he has been in demand from publishers worldwide for his life story. 

He has agreed to a deal. The publishers had to draw on funds from Australia, New Zealand and Britain to make it happen. It is a world-class deal for a world-class athlete.


Photo: GETTY IMAGES (The much-anticipated bout between Sonny Bill Williams and Paul Gallen looks set to become a reality).