The Dom Post editorial:
Major events funding is supposed to deliver on a smorgasbord of objectives – tourism revenue, promotion of the New Zealand brand, trade links, jobs, and so on and so forth.
It usually goes to events that last for days or weeks and draw participants from around the world.
The idea that a boxing bout, fought on a single night, at a venue indistinguishable to any other, will do much for any of these is laughable. The fight will of course draw some attention, and Parker himself might be something of a Kiwi success story, but both will be true whether he is fighting in Las Vegas or at Vector Arena.
I agree. The type of event this is means it is highly likely to produce the benefits of other sporting events.
The need for a seven-figure sum, meanwhile, is certainly a “major” request; the median fund recipient gets about $200,000.
The scrambling, last-minute style of the application deserves skepticism too. Perhaps that is just the way that boxing works, but if so, it is an indication of a shambolic sport that the Government should show some wariness.
In fact, while New Zealand interest in Parker has understandably grown in recent years, and promoters promise a large TV audience, many top boxing observers lament the splintered, rudderless state of the sport. In global terms, Parker is not yet a star at all, but one of a cast of minor characters.
Boxing is a corrupt divided sport with four different international boxing organisations and scores of titles. In some you can even pay to get a title shot.
This match won’t be against a world champion. It will be two globally unknown characters fighting for a vacant title.