Opinion: Officiating is Crucial in Manny Pacquiao-Joshua Clottey Fight

12/03/2010 18:55

Officiating is crucial in the upcoming Pacquiao-Clottey match scheduled for March 13 at the Cowboys Stadium in Texas as news of Clottey's reported history of resorting to illegal blows and head butting to win a fight surfaced in recent media reports.

Two days before fight night Filipino boxer Manny Pacquiao is a five to one favorite to win over the former IBF welterweight champion Joshua Clottey.

Boxing fans usually based their choices of the winner based on statistical records of each boxer when they make their predictions. These statistical data include win-loss records, stance, knock out records and physical data such as height, weight, reach, age, among others.

In the case of the upcoming Pacquiao-Clottey match, it is quite clear that Pacquiao is a runaway favorite to win on the basis of the statistics cited.

Joshua Clottey, the obvious underdog in the most-awaited Saturday night fight, possesses the ability to snatch the WBO crown from the Filipino pound -for-pound king by turning Pacquiao into a bloody mess with his reported 'dirty fighter' refutation.

Freddie Roach, Pacquiao's trainer and coach said Clottey's best punch is his uppercut while his second best is a head butt. What the four-time trainer of the year is actually saying is that Clottey is capable of turning Pacquiao into a bloody mess with his illegal head butting.

Once Pacquiao's vision is impaired due to blood flow from a possible illegal headbutt, Clottey is expected to take advantage of the situation and go for the kill.

It is therefore very crucial for the WBO-designated referee to be vigilant in his officiating, bearing in mind that Clottey has a known refutation as a 'dirty fighter' as reported based on video tapes of his previous fights.

Joaquin Henson of Philstar reports:

How Pacquiao will cope with Clottey’s low blows, head butting, holding and lacing is a big question mark since the Filipino icon has experienced difficulty handling rule-breakers in the past. Clottey’s head butting is a major concern.

The possibility of Clottey resorting to illegal blows and head butting is not remote because of his burning desire for an upset win over the Filipino boxing superstar. Clottey sees the fight and a win over Pacquiao as his passport to boxing stardom.

It is therefore of paramount importance that officiating, including the choice of judges for the fight be properly scrutinized to ensure a fair and equitable verdict.


(original article appeared @ Digital Journal )


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