Works in the Bulletin 1908

The contest lasted 15 rounds, and through that busy period Williams treated O'Keefe's head as a punching ball. ..... Meanwhile the Irishman was hammering away the best he could at Williams' ribs ... He clung to O'Keefe like a clam, used his elbow, and once 'Turned in" for a most decided cross buttock .... For a moment or two it looked as though the two men were disposed to do one another an injury. The police, however, prevented anything of this kind by stopping the contest. - Melb Age report of the Williams-O'Keefe bashing match.

Stripped to the buff they circled round,
   And jagged and swung and crossed;
To uppercut and smash and pound
   No chances either lost;
Till folks opined, in some alarm,
That they might do each other harm.

Fiercely, they swung the left and right, With punch and bash and clout: Each grimly hopeful that he might Secure the glad knook-out. And, as they watched the "claret" spurt, The crowd feared someone might be hurt.
The ribs of one were bruised and sore, His chin was badly gashed; The other's face was streaked with gore; And yet they biffed and bashed. And someone said, "It this goes on There'll be an injury anon."
Harder and swifter rained the blows, And fiercer grew the fray; At chest and chin and eye and nose Each boxer biffed away; Till cried the audience in fright, If they're not stopped they'll start to fight!"
But on they battled, bruised and dazed, Scarce able now to stand; Until the Law stepped in and raised A stern, restraining hand. "Ah!" sighed the crowd, freed from suspense, "It might have led to violence."

The Bulletin, 12 November 1908, p28

Copyright © Perry Middlemiss 2002