Olympic Boxer Disqualified For Biting His Opponent!

by James Slater - The sport of boxing has produced many great moments at the Olympic games over the years. We have seen the unveiling of a number of superbly gifted fighters who later went on to become superstars in the pro ranks, we have seen fighters endear themselves to the viewing public thanks to their own little personal touches - think Ray Leonard wearing a photo of his girlfriend taped to his sock or George Foreman's patriotic waving of the American flag - and we have seen some bizarre demonstrations also - the South Korean fighter who refused to leave the ring even after the lights had been turned out at the Seoul games, for example..

Dzhakhon KurbanovHowever, Tuesday in Beijing saw a first in Olympic boxing history (to this writer's knowledge, anyway). In his light-heavyweight quarter final bout, Tajikistan's Dzhakhon Kurbanov apparently sank his teeth into his Kazakhstan opponent, Yerkebulan Shynaliyev. The bout was stopped after the infringement took place with just seventeen seconds left in the 3rd round, The Associated Press reported. We have seen it all now.

Shynaliyev, who led 12-6 on points at the time of the foul, angrily showed the referee the blood pouring from his shoulder, and the official, who had warned Kurbanov for continual holding and shoving earlier in the bout, was left with no choice but to throw the man from Tajikistan out. The 22-year-old loser, who was competing in his first Olympics, had looked good in his first fight in Beijing, beating world champion Abbos Atoev. Now, sadly, he will leave in disgrace.

Before this outrage, the most infamous "bite" in boxing history was the one former world heavyweight champion Mike Tyson put on Evander Holyfield in their June 1997 rematch. Now, however, we have an addition to the list of pugilists who saw fit to bite their opponent whilst losing. As was the case with "Iron Mike," Kurbanov undoubtedly committed his awful act due to suffering from the frustrations that can be brought on while being beaten by a better man. But when it happens at the Olympics, a time when good sportsmanship is paramount, the sight of an athlete being reduced to such scandalous behaviour is even more appalling.

Ironically enough, the aforementioned Evander Holyfield was just one of the viewing spectators who witnessed Tuesday's ugly infringement. No doubt the sight was one that brought back unpleasant memories for "The Real Deal." As I say, we have seen it all now!

Article posted on 20.08.2008

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