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Terry O’Connor cleared of any wrongdoing in the Ritson-Vazquez contest

Robert Smith on Terry O'Connor
The British Boxing Board of Control will take no action against Terry O'Connor

The British Boxing Board of Control have ruled that Terry O’Connor’s score of 117-111 in Lewis Ritson’s favour over Miguel Vazquez was satisfactory. The lightweight bout topped a Matchroom show on October 17 at the Showground Arena in Peterborough.

Most observers felt that Vazquez was a comfortable winner on the Sky Sports show before O’Connor and Michael Alexander (115-113) overruled the opinion of Marcus McDonnell, who scored the contest 116-113 in Vazquez’s favour, to hand Ritson the victory.

The social media stink caused by the decision got worse when a screen-grab was circulated of O’Connor looking away from the action and at something in his hand. The Board, who today (Friday October 23) carried out the hearing into the official’s conduct, are satisfied that it was not a phone or handheld device as had been suggested at the time. They also concluded that whatever he was looking at would not have affected his ability to score the fight.

THE BN PODCAST: WHY DO JUDGES KEEP GETTING IT WRONG?

The statement in full:

British Boxing Board of Control Judge Mr. Terry O’Connor appeared before the Stewards of the Board to discuss his performance at the tournament held on 17th October 2020 at the East of England Showground Arena, Peterborough.

Allegations made on social media and the print media as to Mr. O’Connor using a mobile telephone or similar handheld device were considered.

Following extensive consideration of footage and Mr. O’Connor’s evidence supplied, the Stewards are satisfied that Mr. O’Connor was not in possession of any telephone or handheld device whilst carrying out his duties as a Judge in the contest between Lewis Ritson and Miguel Vazquez and his scoring of said bout was not affected in any way.

In addition, Mr. O’Connor’s scoring of the bout was considered and whilst judging a contest is subjective and following Mr. O’Connor’s explanation of how he scored the bout, the Stewards are satisfied that Mr. O’Connor’s final score reflected his own opinion of the contest.

The Boxing News Verdict on the situation can be read here

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