Tickets for Mike Tyson show offered - but will he be there?

By Harry Pearl

Tickets for Mike Tyson's November performance at Victor Arena - billed as a "full day of inspiration, motivation and education" - have started selling, but Immigration New Zealand say they are still considering his visa application.

According to the official website for Mike Tyson's "Day of the Champions" event, the $249 ringside tickets have already sold out, while Ticketmaster is offering internet pre-sale tickets from today and tickets for the general public are scheduled to go on sale next week.

However, an Immigration New Zealand spokesman said only that a visa application for Tyson had been received, and is being considered.

"A decision will be made in due course," the spokesman said.

Tyson's "Day of the Champions", scheduled as a one-off show on November 15, is touted as a chance to meet the former world heavyweight boxing champion in an "up-close-and-personal" setting, featuring screen images, music, video and a select few entrepreneurial and motivational speakers.

But despite ticket sales for the performance under way, the event still remains in the balance due to New Zealand visa restrictions which, under the Immigration Act, bar entry to anyone who has been convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for 5 years or more.

Tyson was convicted of rape and sentenced to six years in prison in 1992 but was released three years later for good behaviour.

Last night, Tyson's Sydney-based promoter Max Markson said if the visa application is denied all tickets would be refunded through Ticketmaster.

"We guarantee every dollar. Every ticket will get their money back."

- NZ Herald

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