Team Khurtsidze File a Protest: NJikam Loss, Anti-Doping
2010-11-03 12:52       hits 17168 Print version  

See gallery Hassan N`Dam N`Jikam vs Avtandil Khurtsidze
Hassan N`Dam N`Jikam vs Avtandil Khurtsidze © AP
A recent contest for the vacant WBA interim middleweight belt (WBA super champion is German Felix Sturm, WBA regular titleholder is Kazakh Gennady Golovkin) turned out to be an instant classic and one of the worthiest (yet obscure at the same time) candidates for a Fight of the Year prize in 2010. Battling in front of a partisan home crowd at Palais des Sports Porte de Versailles in Paris, France, local Cameroonian Hassan NDam NJikam (25-0, 17 KOs) squeaked out with a controversial unanimous decision over rugged Georgian brawler Avtandil Khurtsidze (22-2-2, 13 KOs). Scores were 115-114 (Pierluigi Poppi and Erkki Meronen) and 117-111 (Mikael Hook) all for NJikam and were notably and severely booed even by pro-NJikam fans.

That wasnt an end of controversy, however, as Elite Boxing Promotions, a Kiev-based boxing company, which handles the stocky (54) Georgian, filed a protest immediately after the fight.

Aside several tiny violations during the fight, Team Khurtsidze insists that the official drug test for banned substances was never carried out after the contest as per the rules of the World Boxing Association. A corresponding deed was formed and signed by the supervisor of the contest.

Due to a highly controversial nature of the final decision and a missed drug test, which has never been performed, Team Khurtsidze will appeal to the WBA for a cancellation of the result and an immediate rematch between two respected contenders, says the Elite Boxing memorandum.

Former Khurtsidzes promoter Vadim Bukhkalov was also pissed off with the decision and subsequent events.

An entire battle between two fascinating boxers was marvelous. Unfortunately, it has been marred with a dubious decision afterwards: simply put, Avtandil was robbed in this fight big time. This is another black eye to our beloved sport and this is also the reason why talks about a deep crisis in modern boxing will continue their flow. NJikam won five rounds at best. But five out of twelve isnt a victory, thats a loss. 117-111 as was rendered by one of the judges is a complete lack of any restraint. People kept coming afterwards praising our effort and saying Avto was the real winner. Fans reaction, when they booed the outcome, tells it all.

After the fight, a flagrant violation of the WBA rules had taken its place. We had been waiting for medics to perform drug tests for more than two hours. They never came. It looked like it had been preplanned well before, continued Bukhkalov.

Comment: With or without the truth to the aforementioned claim of the drug-test violation, the final outcome of the contest alone can be a reason for an immediate rematch. Watching the fight afterwards, the first of your reporters saw it as 114-115 for Khurtsidze. While a close nature of the contest was obvious for a majority of both local and worldwide fans, Khurtsidze on this reporters mind had done enough at least to escape a loss.

A rematch can be the best solution for yet another reason. A blood-filled, gutsy and grueling affair between two born fighters was a real blessing for fans in attendance and the TV audience. It was a classic competition between Tysonesque little brawler with immense physical power and sheer aggression in Khurtsidze and much bigger and presumably better technician in NJikam. Two-way action all the time and a standard formula brawler vs boxer produced one of the finest performances this year has yet to offer us. An instant replay could be the best way to deliver fans yet another major and thrilling action between two gifted and skilled boxers.

If you missed the first one, try to catch it.

Source: boxingscene.com

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