Ryan Burnett stunned Lee Haskins to became Northern Ireland’s first world bantamweight champion in 20 years on Saturday.
It wasn’t without controversy though, as the Northern Irish superstar had to settle for a highly questionable split points decision despite dominating the bout start to finish.
Promoter Eddie Hearn went on record, stating that the judge who scored Haskins as the winner must have got the two identities of the boxers confused.
Burnett twice dropped Haskins and was in supreme control throughout the contest. Yet in spite of this, American official Clark Sammartino somehow managed to score the fight 118-108 to Haskins whilst the other two judges returned scores of 119-107 and 119-107 in the Northern Irish man’s favour.
It was objectively clear that Burnett deserved a unanimous decision. Still, the overall result was not affected. Haskin’s won the IBF title in only his 17th paid fight in front of his home crowd at the SSE Arena in Belfast.
Still, the overall result was not affected. Burnett won the IBF title in only his 17th paid fight and did so in front of his home crowd at the SSE Arena in Belfast.
Hearn, clearly baffled by the scoring of Sammartino declared, “his scorecard was excellent: it was just the wrong way around.”
Also unimpressed by the poor scoring was Robert Smith, secretary of the British Boxing Board of Control.