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Boxing Judge Suspended Over ‘Racist’ Scorecard And Tweets

by : Emily Brown on : 12 Aug 2021 16:53
Boxing Judge Suspended Over 'Racist' Scorecard And Tweets PBC on Fox/YouTube/Phil Jay/WBA

Boxing judge Gloria Martinez Rizzo has been suspended by the World Boxing Association (WBA) following a controversial scorecard and discovery of racist tweets. 

Rizzo has been suspended for six months after she revealed a confusing scorecard of 117-110 in the interim welterweight title fight between Mykal Fox and Gabriel Maestre which took place in Minnesota on Saturday, August 7.

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The judge’s scorecard proved controversial as viewers believed Fox, a 25-year-old Black boxer from Maryland, clearly won the 147-pound fight, however Maestre, a native of Venezuela, was declared the winner by unanimous decision.

Alongside Rizzo’s 117-110 scorecard, judge John Mariano scored the fight 115-112, while judge David Singh turned in a 114-113 score. Speaking to ESPN, WBA president Gilberto Mendoza said officials ‘saw [Rizzo’s] score was wrong despite the unanimous decision.’

Following the fight, racist tweets posted in 2020 were discovered on a Twitter account for @GloriaRizz, which Mendoza confirmed to belong to Rizzo. Among the tweets were racist remarks made against Michelle Obama and LeBron James.

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Discussing the tweets, Mendoza said: ‘Those comments she made in the past — she might be expelled by the WBA. I don’t support any kind of racism. I believe in equality. … Sports are the only thing that brings equality into the world sometimes.’

Fox told ESPN he was ‘a little surprised’ by the posts made on Rizzo’s account, adding: ‘This sport has introduced me to people from different walks of life. But I can’t help but wonder if the person that she is outside of boxing affects how she judges boxing.’

He continued: ‘If it weren’t for it being on TV, I’d say this [decision] could do really bad for me. But people around the world witnessed a robbery that night.’

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Mendoza has ordered a rematch between Maestre and Fox, though noted there would be no champion’s advantage, meaning if there is a draw, the title will be vacated. There will also be no special permits to allow an interim fight.

The WBA president said: ‘We need to get new judges. I have a concept of making an academy and bringing people who like boxing to online courses and test them in different parts of the world. I want to step away from the boxing circle and find fans who like boxing [to become judges].’

Mendoza is set to consider Rizzo’s permanent expulsion from judging fights sanctioned by the WBA. He will also meet with Rizzo in Miami this week to discuss discipline.

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If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact Stop Hate UK by visiting their website www.stophateuk.org/talk

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Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.

Topics: Sport, Boxing, Racism

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ESPN
  1. ESPN

    WBA suspending judge Gloria Martinez Rizzo after controversial scorecard, discovery of racist tweets