Fans may recall how, at the recent WBC convention in Acapulco, warrior Jeff Fenech was awarded a fourth world title some 31 years after almost everyone felt he had done enough to have won it from Azumah Nelson in their all-action super-featherweight title fight. The official verdict was a draw, but all these years later, the WBC gave Fenech “justice” in handing him his belt.
Right after this news came out, plenty of people wondered where it would all end; would other “bad decisions” be changed years after the fact, and what is the criteria for a fight result fitting the bill? Well, now, some 22 years after he was “cheated out of a win over Manny Pacquiao,” another Australian warrior, Nedal Hussein, has had his lawyers contact the WBC asking for justice.
Fans have seen the backlash that has followed referee Carlos Padilla’s interview, in which he admits how he purposely prolonged the count in the Pacquiao-Hussein fight, this when “Skinny,” as Hussein was known during his ring career, decked Pac Man in the fourth round. Padilla also admitted to stopping the fight due to the cut Hussein suffered as a result of Pacquiao’s headbutt, even though the fight could have continued as the cut was not that serious.
Hussein was naturally livid when he heard what the Filipino referee had to say, and how he wants the result overturned. However, Hussein’s chances of the WBC agreeing to his call may not be all that good, as Hussein has called the governing body, “the most corrupt commission in the world.”
Obviously, Mauricio Sulaiman will not enjoy reading those words, and the WBC president might be quite angry himself.
“It’s a bit different to what happened with Jeff Fenech,” Hussein said when speaking about his desire to have his fight’s result overturned, as quoted by The Mail. “This is to do with the referee, not the judges. But he [Padilla] has openly admitted to cheating here – the man in charge of the fight. I mean, if somebody confessed to a crime 20 years later, the police would chase it up. The corruption in this sport is so bad. They [the WBC] are the most corrupt commission in the world. There is no respect for them in the boxing world.”
Hussein is clearly still fuming about what happened when he lost his unbeaten record and, he says, many thousands of dollars back in October of 2000. But will anything get done? Will the result: Pacquiao TKO10 Hussein get changed? And if it does, where will it end? What other fighters might come out and demand how a fight result of theirs must be, shall we say, fixed?
We’ve seen too many bad decisions, premature stoppages, blown knockdown calls, etc, etc, but no way can all of them be put right years after the fact. What’s done is done. Yet with the Fenech-Nelson episode, the WBC opened itself up to a potential avalanche of aggrieved fighters wanting justice.