Boxing fans reacted with a mixture of disbelief and laughter on Saturday after a broadcaster sat next to former two-weight world champion David Haye instead cut to a white journalist during a segment on “Black History Month.”
The clip was quickly circulated on social media after BT Sport presenter Paul Dempsey – ahead of Liam Williams’ successful defence of his British middleweight title against Andrew Robinson – announced there was “nobody better placed on our team” to discuss “Black History Month” than Steve Bunce, despite Haye being sat alongside him.
— Tom Craze (@TomCraze) October 10, 2020
“I’ve watched this five times in a row and I’m still in shock, but howling as well,” wrote one fan on Twitter, while another added: “Looooooooool Steve?! I thought they were going to let David get his moment. What in the world.”
Others were similarly in disbelief, adding “Was really not expecting ‘Steve Bunce’” and “Every cell in my body thought he was going to turn to Haye, every single one.”
Every cell in my body thought he was going to turn to Haye, every single one. 😂😂😂
— Jamie ramage (@jramage84) October 10, 2020
Former cruiserweight champion Tony Bellew and former IBF super middleweight titleholder Caleb Truax reacted with dismay.
“No one better placed?? The man sitting right next to you!! Is this a comedy show from the 1980’s of some kind?” Bellew asked.
No one better placed?? The man sitting right next to you!! Is this a comedy show from the 1980’s of some kind? 😔 https://t.co/YRQi6CDeKL
— Tony Bellew (@TonyBellew) October 11, 2020
Bunce, 57, is a boxing journalist, broadcaster and historian who has written a book on the history of British boxing, so as several fans noted he was well-placed to discuss the matter despite being white.
However, they felt he had been handed a hospital pass by Dempsey’s wording, and one likened the presenter to comedy character Alan Partridge.
“The thing is, Steve Bunce is the perfect person to talk about black boxers, he’s a boxing encyclopaedia. But, the setup and the fact that he had Haye sitting right next to him makes this #AccidentalPartridge.”
Another echoed a similar sentiment that Bunce is a “walking boxing encyclopaedia,” while a third asked: “Bunce is a boxing historian but why did he set it up like that with Haye next to him?”
As for Bunce himself, following the reaction on social media, he asked fans to judge the segment he presented rather than his introduction.
Can somebody please post the middleweight tribute I did last night – let people decide on the fuss. A lot of people quick to click the switch on the electric chair on people without hearing a word. Just the tribute, not the handover to me. Thanks.
— Steve Bunce (@bigdaddybunce) October 11, 2020
“Can somebody please post the middleweight tribute I did last night – let people decide on the fuss,” he tweeted.
“A lot of people quick to click the switch on the electric chair on people without hearing a word. Just the tribute, not the handover to me. Thanks.”
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