Well that was unexpected.

Sonny Bill Williams has suffered the first loss of his professional boxing career, going down to MMA legend Mark Hunt in a mega upset.

Williams went into the heavyweight fight with a 9-0 record having last beaten Barry Hall in March, while Hunt’s last outing was a loss to Paul Gallen in 2020. 

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The cross-code superstar started the fight well and appeared the better boxer before both Williams and Hunt opened the shoulders and started swinging hard in the third round. 

Hunt may be 48 years old but he still possesses immense power, as he showed in a wild fourth round.

He knocked Williams’ mouthguard out with a brutal right hand before dropping him with a couple of hooks.

“Sonny Bill is down,” commentator Andy Raymond said on Stan Sport.

“He’s hurt. Against the odds, Sonny Bill Williams has been dropped. His eyes are not clear.”

Williams survived the standing count but didn’t last much longer, as Hunt landed a powerful fight jab to his jaw and continued to hammer Williams with both hands against the ropes.

“Mark Hunt, in his final fight, stops the legend that is Sonny Bill Williams. What a fight,” Raymond said.

Australian boxing legend Danny Green added: “Wow that was unbelievable.”

Williams was seeing stars and the referee had no choice but to stop the fight. The former rugby league and union star could scarcely believe it as he went down on his haunches in pain.

Earlier, NRL star Tevita Pangai Jr claimed a stunning knockout win over Jeremiah Tupai with his new Bulldogs coach Cameron Ciraldo watching ringside.

Updates

Round 1: Both fighters eased their way into the bout before Hunt got pinned on the ropes and the pair exchanged blows at the end of the round.

Round 2: A scrappy round. Williams looks the better of the two fighters and appears keen to land a big blow.

Round 3: Williams takes the upper hand and lands some heavy uppercuts with his left hand. Hunt is fading.

Round 4: Hunt comes out swinging and drops Sonny Bill, knocking his mouthguard out. Williams doesn’t last much long as Hunt hammers him against the ropes. Sonny Bill was seeing stars and Hunt wins via stoppage.

Who says footballers can’t box?

Bulldogs forward Tevita Pangai Jr has claimed a brutal knockout win over Jeremiah Tupai on the Sonny Bill Williams vs Mark Hunt undercard.

It looked liked Pangai was struggling and Tupai had the upper hand in the early stages, but Pangai landed a short and sharp left hook from close range that flushed Tupai on the head late in the second round.

Tupai fell straight down to the canvas and lay motionless for a couple of minutes before he eventually regained consciousness.

Tevita Pangai Junior knocks out Jeremiah Tupai-Ui in the heavyweight fight between Tevita Pangai Junior and Jeremiah Tupai-Ui at Aware Super Theatre on November 05, 2022 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)
Tevita Pangai Junior knocks out Jeremiah Tupai-Ui in the heavyweight fight between Tevita Pangai Junior and Jeremiah Tupai-Ui at Aware Super Theatre on November 05, 2022 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)

Tevita Pangai Junior knocked out Jeremiah Tupai-Ui. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)
Tevita Pangai Junior knocked out Jeremiah Tupai-Ui. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)

New Bulldogs coach Cameron Ciraldo was watching the fight ringside and smiled when Pangai got the win.

“I did all the hard training and I was still gassed in the first round. But I knew I’d get my second wind because I train so hard,” Pangai told Stan Sport after claiming his second career win.

“First time doing the 8-10 weeks (training) with Sonny and my team. It’s been awesome.”

He joked he will be staying at the 109kg weight he got down to when he returns to rugby league duties with the Bulldogs.

Death, taxes and gloves drama at the boxing.

Sonny Bill Williams and Mark Hunt have arrived at the venue in Sydney with different types of boxing gloves, which is not allowed.

“The fighter generally doesn’t know about it, the management takes care of it,” former world champion Danny Green said on Stan Sport.

“They’ll work it out but someone is going to have to give.”

Hunt’s camp has relented, agreeing that Hunt will wear the gloves of Sonny Bill’s choice.

Sonny Bill Williams says he would like to fight Paul Gallen, but that choice might be taken out of his hands.

Gallen will fight Justin Hodges later this month in a rematch in what is likely to be his final ever boxing fight.

“I would love to have stepped in the ring with Paul,” Williams told 9 News ahead of his fight with Mark Hunt.

“But if that’s his last fight, so be it. He’s done well. He’s earned the right to call time on his career because he’s had a pretty successful career as a boxer.

“I’m not too sure. It’s Mark Hunt tomorrow and then we’ll see what happens.”

A fight between the two NRL legends would be a tantalising one but it’s unlikely now after talks repeatedly broke down.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – NOVEMBER 04: Sonny Bill Williams poses during the weigh in ahead of the Sonny Bill Williams v Mark Hunt bout, at Aware Super Theatre on November 04, 2022 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – NOVEMBER 04: Sonny Bill Williams poses during the weigh in ahead of the Sonny Bill Williams v Mark Hunt bout, at Aware Super Theatre on November 04, 2022 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)

“It was disappointing the way that it transpired – because I work with Paul, I see him at work, and now it’s kind of like he said, she said. I don’t really like that about the boxing game,” Williams said.

“People need to know that, yeah, I would love to have that fight, [but] it’s a 60-40 split. If he wants it he wants it. If he doesn’t, it’s cool, it’s no stress to me. It’s part of my life, it’s not my whole life. We’ll see.

“Sold out Cronulla Park, hey? What do you reckon?”

“Nah, it’s all good. My thoughts and concentration has to be with Mark (Hunt).

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