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What Price Boxing Justice?


PhilBoxing.com



Andales (R) and Freshmart.

What price boxing justice, or to be more accurate correcting an injustice committed atop the ring by a supposed impartial referee?

Ten thousand dollars or roughly a little over half a million pesos.

That was the amount quoted by the World Boxing Association as the fee that the camp of Filipino fighter ArAr Andales has to pay for the WBA to give due course to the protest the latter lodged concerning a disputed ending to a world title bout held last month in Thailand.

Fight promoter and manager Gerry Balmes placed the result of the WBA minimumweight title fight between Andales and defending Thai champion Knockout CP Freshmart after the South Korean referee ruled that Freshmart was unable to continue due to cuts caused allegedly by head clashes and called for the judges tally that resulted to the Thai retaining his title via technical unanimous decision.

Review of the fight tapes showed no clear cases of the two fighters heads coming into hard contacts, accidentally or otherwise that could have caused the injury to the Thai champion, Balmes contended.

On the contrary, what could be seen clearly were sequences or bits of actions where Andales landed legit blows that with all probability caused the cuts which both were on the eyelids of the Thai fighter, Balmes said.

The nature of the injury and its location, in the eyelid, by themselves will suggest that it is caused by punch as it is impossible for a clash of heads to bring it about, Balmes added.

For comparison, the same injury on the eyelid caused the referee to stop the Nonito Donaire vs Moruti Mthalane world flyweight title fight some years back with Donaire declared winner by technical knockout.

The same could have been the result of the Andales-CP Freshmart fight had the referee not ruled that the injury to the Thai was caused earlier by accidental headbutt or clash of heads.

That was the reason the Andales camp put the result of the fight under protest only to be taken aback by the $10,000 filing fee that the WBA required.

"It is not the amount of money involved per se that bothered us, although it is rather stiff as it is given the nature and the surrounding circumstances," Balmes explained in our recent phone patched interview over our weekly radio program, "Sport Lang", airing every Saturday 3-5 pm at RP 2 Sports Radio 918 khz.

Balmes found it highly disproportionate as well as inappropriate for the WBA to require them to post a $10,000 filing fee for a title fight where Andales guaranteed purse was only $8,500.

With support coming from outside sources, Balmes said, the amount could still be raised but he said given what they are made to go through for the protest to be entertained and given due course, he has some misgivings, even asking if it all be worth it, in the end.

As of the moment, Balmes would rather not allow any of his wards to fight in Thailand anymore.

Balmes also expressed his deep disappointment with the WBA Asia based in South Korea which he said did nothing to help its own Asian continental champion Andales in seeking justice and fair play for him in the WBA proper.

Perhaps, it is because the referee in question was from South Korea who Balmes said acted inappropriately before the stoppage and during the deliberation of the results in consort with the Thai camp.

Hopefully, the Games and Amusements Board (GAB) and well intentioned individuals with interest or of concern as Senator Manny Pacquiao would come to the support of Andales and Andales in their crusade for boxing justice.

Ten thousand dollars is afterall not too steep a price to correct a grievious error of judgment due to lack of or abuse of discretion by the referee in a world title fight that favored the home fighter at the expense of the visiting fighter.


The author Teodoro Medina?Reynoso?is a veteran boxing radio talk show host living in the Philippines.?? He can be reached at?teddyreynoso@yahoo.com?and by phone 09215309477.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Teodoro Medina Reynoso.


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