Named & Shamed: Judging the Judges (January 2016)

The Erkan Teper-David Price situation is everything that’s wrong with boxing’s fractured governance and poorly managed PED testing.

Jake Donovan’s report for Boxingscene.com outlines the lurid chain of events in detail: http://www.boxingscene.com/teper-dealt-two-year-ban-price-ko-changed-no-contest–99702?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

The German Boxing Federation (BDB) are most at fault: taking five months to disclose the failed test for the Price fight; it only coming to light now that Teper had previously failed a test & was given a short ban in mid-2014; and for failing to inform the European Boxing Union about any of this until December 2015, when Teper had shortly beforehand been scheduled to fight once again for their title.

It was also somehow not revealed publicly that a police raid on Teper’s residence in April of last year uncovered vast amounts of PEDs (for example, clenbuterol, testosterone, growth hormone and Methandrostenolone).

Despite what Donovan’s article says, it remains to be seen whether Price’s loss to Teper will be officially changed to a ‘no contest’. For unknown reasons, the EBU say that the result stands, while the BDB disagree.

David Price’s career has essentially been destroyed by drug cheats, his other two losses coming to Tony Thompson, who failed a test after his 2nd knockout of Price (another fight not yet changed to a ‘no contest’), as well as after his next fight against Kubrat Pulev.

 

 

January 16th – Pasquale Procopio & Waleska Roldan’s 78-74 scores in favour of defending titlist Deontay Wilder at the time he knocked out plucky challenger Artur Szpilka were simply not in line with reality and smacked of bias towards the house fighter.

Thankfully, Wilder’s bomb of a right hand meant the ending was devoid of controversy.

 

On the undercard, another heavyweight title bout was cut short by a leg injury suffered by Vyacheslav Glazkov against Charles Martin.

But what makes this a matter for inclusion in this segment is that Glazkov’s slip which caused the injury was precipitated by a large, slick advertisement, which had been plastered to the ring canvas.

This sort of thing happens far too often: causing slips to be ruled as fight-altering knockdowns, and, in the case of Glazkov, injuring boxers completely unnecessarily.

It’s rarely mentioned but is a good example of boxing’s craziness. What other sport would allow such a risk?

I can’t imagine slippery advertising being stamped on the centre court of Wimbledon to impair movement & significantly heighten the possibility of Roger Federer falling on his ass in front of millions.

 

January 22nd – Ahmet Patterson seemingly ended his bout with Ryan Aston with a perfectly placed body shot in the 6th round, only for ref Marcus McDonnell to incorrectly rule it a low blow and give Aston time to recover.

Patterson ended matters almost immediately upon the restart, thankfully avoiding undue punishment for Aston or an alteration of the outcome.

 

January 30th – Jean Pascal was knocked down in the first round by Sergey Kovalev’s fearsome jab, only for ref Michael Griffin to rule it a slip, perhaps confused, continuing the theme of this month’s segment, by the presence of a large advertising ‘sticker’ under his feet at the time.

In fact, the advertising on the canvas did cause noticeable footing problems for both Kovalev and Pascal throughout this fight.

 

January 30th – Ref Victor Loughlin was in charge of the Tommy Martin-John Wayne Hibbert Commonwealth title contest, and caused controversy with the manner of his stoppage.

It was almost identical to the far more controversial Chisora-Scott stoppage on British shores in 2013: http://www.boxingscene.com/bbboc-explain-rejection-chisora-vs-scott-protest–68408

In short, Loughlin counted Martin out in the final round as he rose at the count of 9, rather than giving him the full ten to get to his feet. Why, you ask? Because that is the British Board’s senseless rule.

Unlike in other jurisdictions, in a British ring, you are considered ‘down’ when in the act of rising to your feet. Thus, essentially, you only have to floor your opponent for a 9 count to author a knockout.

In this case, unlike in Chisora-Scott, it didn’t affect the result, as Hibbert was well ahead on points with less than 90 seconds remaining on the clock.

Worryingly, this pedantic and arcane rule is obviously not well known outside of BBBofC officials, so I highly doubt that British fighters are aware of it when stepping into the ring to fight (Martin certainly wasn’t and neither were the Sky Sports broadcasters), and I even more strongly doubt that all visiting fighters, for example Malik Scott, are informed of it in their pre-fight instructions.

This obviously leaves the door open for fighters to unknowingly mistime their attempts to rise to their feet and creates needless controversy.

It’s a rule that serves no purpose and should be scrapped.

 

Let’s end by mentioning Frank Bruno, the 54 year old former heavyweight titlist who hasn’t fought since 1996, but announced plans for a comeback recently.

On top of his advanced age and inactivity, he has suffered through many bouts of well-publicized mental illness.

Thankfully, the British Board have said they will not consider licensing him, but one fears there are other entities out there, for example the Maltese and Latvian federations who still license completely shot boxers like Danny Williams, who will have no such scruples.

Let’s hope Bruno and those close to him see sense and don’t go ahead with this pipe dream.

5 thoughts on “Named & Shamed: Judging the Judges (January 2016)

  1. Bravo, sharp column as usual.

    Drugs, secret home raids, slippery ring advertisements, ten counts that last to nine, all against a backdrop of promoters ensuring top talents don’t fight each other: it’s boxing as if JG Ballard had invented it.

    • Thanks.

      Boxing is the damn red light district of sports, ludicrous stuff littered throughout even a relatively light month like January.

      Roy Jones, having dispelled rumours of retirement, is set to ‘fight’ a fan for the cash prize of 100k if they manage to beat him. It seems there’s not enough money in rapping Pascal to the ring.

      As for top talents not fighting each other, it’s surprising to hear that Charles Martin vs. Anthony Joshua is confirmed for April 9th. It’s an almost unprecedented case of a Haymon guy defending a title abroad, and an unexpectedly early title tilt for the unproven Brit.

      That said, Martin has done nothing to prove he’s world level and I think Joshua stops him early. Then he can do as Wilder has, and defend against sub-top ten opposition for a while, as he continues to learn on the job. Shrewd business from Hearn & co.

      Better Call Saul is back tomorrow.

      • Keen for Saul.

        The return, creakily in my view, of The X-Files set me off on a brief tour revisiting the show’s glory days. There I was reminded that Vince Gilligan cut his teeth on the main product and its Lone Gunmen spin-off.

        My feeling about the reboot: time is cruel. Fresh-faced youth was central to the calorie-junkie credulity that made the thing work in the past, and without it… I won’t say it’s Aliens Stole My Hip Replacement. It has moments. As before I give Chris Carter props for his Chomsky-lite skepticism about powers-behind-the-throne, but I’d rather he did something else. He should have taken a cue from his old employee Gilligan, whose post-X-Files work might be grounded in social realism but actually gives us a weirder, more fraught view on our world.

        I’m with you regarding Joshua-Martin. A rarity of sorts, and perhaps it is Uncle Al damning with faint praise by cashing his Martin check while there’s something left in the account. It’ll be empty post-Joshua, I reckon.

        Love “the red light district of sports.”

  2. Pingback: Named and Shamed: Judging the Judges (June 2016) | pound 4 pound ireland

  3. Pingback: January 5th’s Random Boxing Rants | pound 4 pound ireland

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