Saturday's boxing match between Jeff Horn and Michael Zerafa at Bendigo Stadium will feature 'ring girls', a practice local advocates say is out of step with modern attitudes and disrespectful of women.
Event promoter Lynden Hosking said ring girls were common at boxing events and "looked good on TV".
The ring girls for the Horn v Zerafa match were also present at Friday's weigh-in, standing in the background of the highly publicised event.
Mr Hosking said he believed the practice of having women in such roles did not influence societal attitudes towards women.
He said the women wanted to participate and would not be put up to the role if they were uncomfortable about it.
The women at the Bendigo event are paid employees of the promoter.
"They're good girls, they love what they do," Mr Hosking said.
But the continued use of ring girls in the sport has drawn criticism.
"I'm shocked they're still using them, when there's a move away from the objectification of women in other sports and recreational activities," Loddon Campaspe Centre Against Sexual Assault chief executive officer Kate Wright said.
Formula One stopped using 'grid girls' at races in early 2018 and the Tour Down Under replaced 'podium girls' with junior cyclists in 2016. Other events have also changed their practices.
F1's commercial events managing director, Sean Bratches, said at the time that the practice did not "resonate with our brand values and clearly is at odds with modern day societal norms".
Ms Wright said such practices supported "the objectification and sexualisation of women".
"Having women as accessories... it reinforces that diminishing of women in our community," she said.
Councillor Jennifer Alden, a member of the City of Greater Bendigo's gender equity working group, said the practice was not in step with the messages the city wanted to promote.
Related: Sport's key role in gender equality
"Stereotypes such as these are not respectful of women, and being respectful of women is key to eliminating other forms of violence, especially violence towards women and children," Cr Alden said.
Dr Bridie O'Donnell, the director of Victoria's Office for Women in Sport and Recreation, said it was important to celebrate the roles of the women involved in boxing and combat sports in positive ways.
"Having women... that hold up signs between rounds in boxing matches" did not help in moving women's involvement forward, she said, and it was important women were not used as decorations in sport.
Dr O'Donnell said there was a strong appetite among women and girls for such sports but she thought it was challenging for women to be involved in boxing, and removing ring girls would be a positive step in addressing this.
The global response to the now-famous photo of Carlton player Tayla Harris' kick, she said, showed people wanted to embrace women at the highest levels of sport.
Ring girls reportedly first appeared at boxing matches in the 1960s and Mr Hosking said ring girls would continue to be a feature at his events.
"We're definitely not going to bow to political correctness," he said.
Saturday's match was secured for Bendigo with state government funding, but Events Minister Martin Pakula declined to comment.