Boxing

Two British Boxing Writers Aren't Feeling The Outrage Over Conlan Loss

Two British Boxing Writers Aren't Feeling The Outrage Over Conlan Loss

Without mentioning the grievances of any specific nationality, Billy Walsh of Team USA has told the Guardian just what he thinks of the judging in this year's Olympics. In his view, it has been the worst games since Seoul in 1988, the scene of the notorious Roy Jones Jr robbery. Interestingly, he also claimed Uzbekistan fighters were being favoured.

We all wonder why we are out here working our socks off trying to get our guys ready. They give us the rules and we try to get our guys to adhere to those rules and then fight in that fashion and then we do and we don’t get it. It’s the worst games since 1988 when Roy Jones got robbed in the final.

Elsewhere, the same article in the Guardian reported the new comments of the same 'senior official' who last month claimed that boxing matches would be fixed at this Olympics. The source told the paper that all his fears were being realised.

As predicted, the corruption is alive and well and the decisions speak for themselves. It is clear the AIBA will not do anything about this. It is now time for the IOC to step in.

According to the source, officials had previously used hand signals to manipulate judges but are having been questioned at major championships they are now meeting before tournaments to decide on certain bouts.

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An AIBA spokesman utterly rejected those allegations, saying that he wasn't going to comment on specific allegations from unnamed sources but said that safeguards were in place.

Meanwhile, following Michael Conlan's deeply controversial and yet somehow strangely unsurprising loss in the Olympic quarter-final, the outrage being felt on this side of the Irish Sea isn't quite shared to the same degree by two well known boxers in the UK.

Kevin Mitchell of the Guardian and Jeff Powell of the Daily Mail both reckoned Conlan the winner but only just. And neither subscribes to the theory that corruption in the judging process accounts for the defeat with Powell asserting that fixing the competition would be borderline impossible.

The three judges — a Brazilian, a Sri Lankan and a Pole — were among five kept in a closed room without their mobile phones and selected by computer 10 minutes before the fight.

To fix a tournament would be almost impossible and require a fortune to bribe so many officials.

Ironically, there have been fewer controversies than usual here.

Conlan, said Powell, "opened himself up to the risk of this considerable upset by boxing most of the first round on the back foot against No 2 seed Vladimir Nikitin."

Kevin Mitchell verdict on the fight was initially rather similar. He said that Conlan's furious post-fight interviews were borne on 'frustration rather than cool analysis'. We don't think we're being excessively charitable when we say that being able to deliver 'cool analysis' at such a moment would require an heroic level of zen calmness. Mithcell just about gave the fight to Conlan  but now appears to have been replaced by a news article based around the comments of Billy Walsh, the unnamed source and the IABA spokesman.

Read more: Ireland's Cruel Loss In Belgium In '81 And 5 Other Great Sporting Injustices

Conor Neville
Article written by
Perennial finalist in stand-up comedy competitions and former Contract Lawyer/ Coal Salesman with Corless, Corless and Sweeney

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