From the Super Mario Wiki, the Mario encyclopedia
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The setting for this microgame is a boxing match. The player controls one of the boxers and must defeat their opponent. The only way to do this is to wait for the opponent to attack, then dodge with the control pad. Then, they must press the button to punch, which, if done right, will deplete one point of health from the opponent.
All opponents now have only three health points. Moreover, new characters serve as opponents. The top screen displays their names, titles and portraits, as well as pieces of trivia about each.
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