Pacquiao on WBO review: ‘Nothing surprises me now’
MANILA, Philippines – Manny Pacquiao takes little solace from the World Boxing Organization’s review of the judging from his fight against Jeff Horn.
The WBO announced the results of its anonymous 5-judge review panel, which saw 3 "independent" judges affirm the decision for Horn, while one had it for Pacquiao and another had it even.
“Let the people judge for themselves. People saw what happened,” said Pacquiao in a statement. “We have seen worse judgments in the past where judges manipulated results. Nothing surprises me now.”
The review was requested by the Games and Amusements Board, which oversees professional boxing in the Philippines, and Pacquiao later backed the request. The Puerto Rico-based WBO opened the statement, which was issued on Monday, July 10 (Tuesday Manila time), by saying the “bout results were controversial causing disputes amongst fans,” but reiterated that they did not have the power to reverse the judges’ decision.
All 3 official judges scored the fight on July 2 in favor of Horn, a decision which caused widespread debate in the boxing community. Reporters from ESPN, Yahoo, Sports Illustrated, and The Ring magazine all had Pacquiao winning the fight, while ESPN commentator Teddy Atlas told Horn in his post-fight interview that he thought he had lost the fight.
No review of Mark Nelson, whose refereeing Pacquiao had criticized, was made. GAB chairman Abraham "Baham" Mitra thanked the WBO for their review but maintained that Nelson's actions impacted the fight's outcome.
"We are grateful that WBO acted promptly on our request but no matter what review they do it will be hard to change the result as the referee didn't call it close," Mitra said in a separate statement. "The judges' scores would have greatly changed if the refs did their job properly. He didn't give [Senator] Manny the respect and fair protection that is due to a people's champ."
A similar review was made in 2012 when Pacquiao was judged the split-decision loser against Timothy Bradley Jr in their first fight. In that review, all 5 judges scored the fight for Pacquiao but the decision remained.
Pacquiao is currently in his hometown of General Santos City, Philippines. There is a rematch clause in the original contract but Pacquiao has yet to definitively state whether he will exercise it. – Rappler.com