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Controversial boxer Soulan Pownceby will still be fighting in Christchurch on July 3 as interest in the bout grows from the recent publicity about his criminal past.
Organiser Pat Mills yesterday reported an upsurge of interest since Pownceby's criminal record and Olympic selection simultaneously became public knowledge this week.
"I don't know whether it is because of all the publicity or just because it is getting near to tournament time but there have been a lot of calls," said Mills.
"We have had some negative comments but there have been a lot more in support of him."
Pownceby's notoriety would in the normal course of events be a promoter's dream but admission to the event is free.