A number of unnamed referee judges were stood down from the Olympic boxing competition yesterday because, according to AIBA, “less than a handful” of the judges’ decisions were not up to standard. There has been an outcry at several decisions here, including the Olympic heavyweight final.
After that revelation, none of the AIBA five star referees and judges have officiated at any of the contests on Wednesday and Thursday. Up until yesterday (August 17) the five star referees and judges had officiated at every day of the competition, featuring in many of the bouts in any given session.
There are seven five star judges. They are Ireland’s Michael Gallagher, England’s Mik Basi, Kazakhstan’s Rakhymzhan Rysbayev, Poland’s Mariusz Gorny, Russia’s Vladislav Malyshev, Argentina’s Gerardo Poggi and Algeria’s Kheira Sidi Yakoub.
The absence of the seven is deeply concerning in light of the controversy over judging at this tournament. These are, in theory, AIBA’s most highly trained, professional judges. Mik Basi in fact took the oath on behalf of the judges at the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games, Michael Gallagher for instance has been AIBA’s ‘referee and judge of the year’ in the past.
Today it also emerged that AIBA’s executive director Karim Bouzidi had been reassigned immediately.