Terry O'Connor: Judge summoned by BBBofC after Lewis Ritson win

Lewis Ritson
Lewis Ritson has won 21 of his 22 professional bouts

Judge Terry O'Connor has been called to appear before British Boxing Board of Control stewards after Lewis Ritson's win over Miguel Vazquez.

O'Connor scored the fight 117-111 in Ritson's favour as the Briton won the WBA intercontinental light-welterweight title on a split decision.

Ritson's promoter, Eddie Hearn, has questioned whether the judge was looking at his phone while officiating.

Hearn, who was not at the fight, has also said Vazquez deserved to win.

The experienced O'Connor, who is a former professional boxer, has judged over 500 fights.external-link

A second judge scored Saturday's fight in Peterborough 115-113 in favour of Ritson, while the other gave it to Mexican Vazquez 116-113.

Newcastle fighter Ritson, 27, has now won 21 of his 22 bouts as a professional.

It is a bad one - Costello

Responding to a social media post showing a clip of O'Connor ringside, Hearn said on Monday: "If it's a phone he should be removed and, if not, he should be accountable for the scorecard. The BBBofC has called a hearing and we will see. It's over to them."

BBC Radio 5 Live Boxing's Mike Costello said: "On the television coverage it is very difficult to determine if it is a telephone. It is the briefest of looks. He was - a lot of the time - picking up and putting down his scorecards so it might well have been that.

"There will be so much controversy around the decision and it is a bad one. I had it 8-4 in rounds for Vazquez."

Fellow 5 Live Boxing analyst Steve Bunce added: "Terry is a big character in every way. He has received a lot of stick over the years. He is going to get stick and abuse over this.

"He is still looking away from the fights, whether it is one second or five minutes. I am loathe to start a witch hunt. They make mistakes. But this is not to do with the boxing, it's to do with him looking away."

Others in the British boxing community were incensed by the decision in the immediate aftermath of the fight.

Manager Sam Jones, who guides the career of British heavyweight Joe Joyce, wrote on social media: "I promise that's the worst decision I've ever seen in boxing."

And boxing trainer Dave Coldwell posted: "Spoilt a great show for me there. Upsets, great fights all the way through and then you get an absolutely scandalous decision that takes the headlines and conversations away from all the good adverts for our sport from the rest of the bill."

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