Man sentenced after lethal punch on Gold Coast

ONE punch on a weekend getaway for a football match on the Gold Coast changed the lives of two families forever.

Coffs Harbour man, Kenneth Faron Shawn Lionel Major, 25, delivered a lethal punch to Api Lai in the heart of the coast's glitter strip after Mr Lai had assaulted his sister.

Major was not drunk and did not see the assault.

But he reacted quickly upon learning what had taken place.

He had driven from Coffs to the Gold Coast with his wife to watch the Indigenous All Stars NRL match on February 14, 2010, and moved onto Surfers Paradise afterward.

Major was set to face a trial in Brisbane Supreme Court on Thursday but he pleaded guilty to manslaughter at the last minute.

He was sentenced to five years in jail, suspended after 15 months.

Major has already served 438 days in custody.

Major was convicted of manslaughter after a trial last year and sentenced to six years jail with parole eligibility after 18 months.

But the Court of Appeal overturned the conviction earlier this year and a retrial was ordered.

The original sentencing justice described the assault as senseless and random despite the provocation and intense emotion that night.

"I'm sure if you had that minute or two again, then you would act very differently," the justice said last year.