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Williams’ next opponent

Williams’ next opponent

SONNY BILL Williams may have to defend his New Zealand heavyweight boxing title against either seasoned pros Shane Cameron or Monte Barrett at some point.

The Cameron v Barrett bout in Auckland has been given an ‘eliminator’ status by New Zealand Professional Boxing Association president Lance Revill.

It means the winner will be considered the No 1 contender for Williams’ NZPBA belt.

Under NZPBA rules, Williams must actively defend his title within 12 months or relinquish it.

New Zealander Cameron is the former holder of Williams’ belt, a title he vacated when he dropped down to the cruiserweight division, following his 2009 loss to David Tua.

The American-born Barrett, who halted the professional career of Tua last year, is in the process of becoming a New Zealand resident.

Either way, it spells bad news for Williams, who is nothing more than a part-time boxer. There is no way he can compete against Cameron and Barrett, both of whom are highly experienced heavyweights.

Williams’ manager Khoder Nasser is unlikely to agree to the bout, as his client is likely to be defeated and could suffer serious injury.

However, it is thought that Williams' first defence of his title will be in May and could be against Richard Tutaki

He was scheduled to fight him last week until Tutaki was arrested on drugs charges.

Williams' New Zealand Rugby Union contract allows him to fight up to three times a year.

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