Referee cops punch during Auckland King in the Ring bout

There were only meant to be eight fighters trading punches at King in the Ring in Auckland last night, but a ninth person got a surprise when they too took a shot to the face - the referee.

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A wayward hook missed the opponent and instead clocked a referee right in the face. Source: 1 NEWS

In the first semi-final between James Craughwell and Pane "Punisher" Haraki, referee Clyde Cowley was the one being punished, as a wayward hook from Haraki in the third round struck the referee right in the face.

However, Cowley was all smiles, shaking off the shot and getting straight back into calling the fight.

City Kickboxing's Navajo Stirling came out on top at the end of the evening, winning his second straight title after defeating Craughwell in the final.