WBO to review bout
He was at ringside when Jeff Horn was rewarded with a unanimous decision win over Manny Pacquiao. He was present at the post-fight conference which Team Pacquiao chose to skip.
World Boxing Organization president Paco Valcarcel must have seen and felt that there were merits on the call for review of the scorecards by the Games and Amusements Board (GAB), which was endorsed by Pacquiao, that he acceded.
Valcarcel ordered the formation of a five-man independent panel that will re-score the tape of “Battle of Brisbane” to find out whether Horn really did enough to snatch Pacquiao’s welterweight title last Sunday.
Judges Chris Flores and Ramon Cerdan both scored the bloody 12-round, 115-113, while judge Waleska Roldan saw it 117-112.
But even if the panel scores the bout in favor of Pacquiao, the result can no longer be changed, according to the WBO.
“The purpose of this review is to be able to give the fans certainty of who was the winner of the bout, even though we do not have the power to reverse the decision of the judges,” said Valcarcel.
GAB chair Abraham Kahlil Mitra welcomed the WBO’s decision to carry out a review, saying that even if that won’t change the outcome of the contentious bout, it will send a strong signal that any sign of leniency, abuse of authority or wrongdoing would not be tolerated.
Valcarcel said five anonymous judges will review the bout, assigning their own scores to rounds.
“Then, we will tabulate the results to ascertain clearly which rounds each fighter won using an average scale based on 60, 80 and 100 percent,” Valcarcel added. “This means that three of the five officials have to agree to determine which fighter won the round.”
Valcarcel supported the judges, who have each scored hundreds of fights: “The officials who participated in this fight are all professional, distinguished, honest and honorable human beings.”
A similar case happened when Pacquiao lost to Timothy Bradley by split decision on June 9, 2012 in their first showdown at MGM Grand Garden Arena.
That time, judge Jerry Roth sided with Pacquiao, 115-113, but was overturned by judges CJ Roth and Duane Ford who both scored the bout 115-113 in Bradley’s favor.
Due to howls of protest all over the world, a panel of competent judges was formed to review the tape of the fight.
Eventually, all five men chose Pacquiao the winner and it was not even close, 117-111 twice, 118-110, 116-112 and 115-113. The panel’s decision was duly noted, but Bradley’s victory was never reversed. —WITH REPORTS FROM AP
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