Olympic Boxing Judges Under Fire For Alleged Match-Fixing

Questions about the scoring in the Olympic men’s boxing have been raised after a series of disputed results.

Eyebrows were first raised last Wednesday when Azerbaijan fought Japan. The Azeri bantamweight Magomed Abdulhamidov won the match despite going down six times in the final round. After an appeal by Japan the decision was overturned. Days later another Azeri, Teymur Mammadov, entered the ring and was awarded a very narrow victory against a Belarusian fighter Siarhei Karneyeu. The crowd and commentators were astounded when he won. Belarus appealed but this time it was not upheld.

Last year a Newsnight investigation got hold of a confidential investment agreement between someone from Azerbaijan and World Series Boxing, which is run by AIBA, who also run Olympic Boxing. The investor from Azerbaijan paid $9m to fund an almost bankrupt tournament called the World Series Boxing (WSB). The insiders said Ivan Khodabakhsh, the Chief Operating Officer of WSB, told them that a secret deal had been done in return for two gold medals. But Mr Khodabakhsh told Newsnight that claims that there was any deal with Azerbaijan were “an absolute lie”.


The president of the International Boxing Association, Ching-Ko- Wu who was ringside with David Cameron on Wednesday, said: “The allegation that AIBA took a $10m bribe from Azerbaijan in exchange for two gold medals at the Olympic Games in London is untrue… There is only one way to win a gold medal at the Olympic Games and that is to train hard and fight well.”

Boxing has had its fair share of scandals and accusations of match fixing. Some people would like to see even more transparency in the scoring. Jim Neilly, BBC commentator who has been ringside at all the fights, said scoring has always been subjective and no scoring system was fool proof. It costs $500 every time an appeal is lodged and he said many countries such as Cuba cannot pay to contest the decisions.

Do you think there is a grain of truth in these match-fixing allegations in Olympic boxing? Share your opinions with us and you be the judge!

Source: BBC News

Image: Yahoo! Sport

Olympics 2012: Fencing Controversy Costs South Korea Medal

The Olympic fencing tournament was thrown into an incredibly emotional, dramatic and elongated controversy when a semifinal bout of the women’s individual epee competition was won on a final touch with 1 second remaining and the losing fencer launched an appeal of the decision which eventually cost her a place on the podium.

With time running out in one of the two semifinal matches for the women’s individual epee competition, South Korea’s Shin A Lam led Germany’s Britta Heidermann by a single point. Officially, Heidermann had just one second to launch an attack and score a touch, which would advance her on to the gold medal match to face the Ukraine’s Yana Shemyakina, a lack of time which all but ensured that Shin would advance.

Instead, the timing mechanism on the piste became stuck, giving Heidermann extra time to complete her attack and win the bout, which earned her the spot in the gold medal bout. Officials, unsure what to do without a true, official protocol to follow, eventually decided to award the victory to Heidermann.


As one might expect, Shin and her coaches were enraged with the decision, and launched an immediate appeal. Yet the appeal itself proved to be incredibly lengthy and also contained a unique bylaw that required Shin to remain on the piste throughout its duration. At long last, after more than 30 minutes of a delay that included the Korean federation having to expedite a payment for the use in the official appeal, Shin’s attempt to overturn the result failed.

Clearly, Shin should have had a chance for the gold medal; if the timing mechanism didn’t get stuck, the clock would have run out and she would have advanced. Yet denying Heidermann a shot without some kind of a playoff-style bout might have been equally cruel. Either way, the fencing tournament somehow ended up with an unfortunate and completely unforeseen loser which will lead to plenty of gripes and arguments going forward from multiple national federations, to be sure.

What is your opinion about the controversial ruling on this fencing bout? Who was the real winner in that round — South Korea or Germany?

Source: Yahoo News

Image: Zimbio