Paul Gallen is adamant Lucas Browne didn’t take a dive, confident he simply out-worked and out-muscled the former world heavyweight champion.
Gallen took less than two minutes to flatten Browne in their fight in Wollongong on Wednesday night as critics slammed the “pathetic” bout that saw plenty of punters ask for their money back, given it was over so quickly.
Watch Boxing Live & On-Demand on Kayo. Selected international fights, classic bouts and more. New to Kayo? Try 14-Days Free Now >
There were rumours Browne only showed up for a hefty payday and didn’t prepare properly for the fight, while he also denied suggestions he was scoffing down sausage rolls in his dressing room before entering the ring.
Among the more sinister accusations were that Browne took a dive in the first round. Fans and commentators questioned how easily he hit the canvas after a punch to the head that few expected to drop the 117kg monster.
Boxing commentator Paul Kent said: “I didn’t expect Lucas Browne to go down so easily. I didn’t see a clear concussive punch … For a flurry of punches to put him down in the first round surprises me.”
Gallen wanted to shut down suggestions made by people online that Browne acted his way out of the remaining rounds, saying his rival couldn’t stand his heavy hands.
“There’s no way he took a dive. I flat-out bashed him, to be honest with you,” Gallen said on radio.
“I have no doubt he took me lightly. I said that throughout the whole build-up. He thought he was going to walk through me.
“That was his attitude. He wouldn’t have taken the fight if he thought it was going to be a competition like it was.
“He tried to pull his finger out, but as I said during the press conference, it was too late unless you had done the work earlier on. You can’t cram it all into the last two weeks and he tried to do that and it didn’t work for him.
“He didn’t take a dive. There’s no way he took a dive.
“It disappoints me after all of the hard work I’ve done over the past 11 weeks that people are actually saying that.”
Browne also issued an angry message to the haters the morning after the fight to deny taking a dive.
“It’s so f***ing sad to see so many bulls*** comments, attacks, haters and people saying I took a dive,” the 42-year-old wrote. “I had a fight, I fought s***, couldn’t recover, have been out the ring for too long and got beat, end of story.
“I got in there, had a go, failed, and that’s it … full credit to Gallen. Thankyou to the fans, supporters and sponsors, and I do apologise.
“I believe I got hit back of the head, behind the ear and it f***ed up my equilibrium and I basically couldn’t recover.”
Browne later revealed he couldn’t hear out of his left ear because of the punch to the top of his head.