Queensbury Promotions’ Frank Warren has gone on record to air his dissatisfaction at Friday night’s scoring in Argentina, that saw his fighter, Ovill McKenzie (25-12-1, 13ko), battle to a disappointing draw with hometown IBF cruiserweight champion, Victor Ramirez, despite appearing to have done enough to win the fight.
The 36 year old McKenzie boxed the fight of his life, having taken the golden opportunity on just 11 days notice, and was clearly the busier of the two on the night, negating much of the plodding champion’s best work with a fleetness of foot one is unaccustomed to seeing from the Jamaican-born “Upsetter.”
It was always going to be a difficult ask for McKenzie, boxing in the champion’s Buenos Aires backyard however, yet it appeared on the night that Ramirez may have overlooked the heavy betting underdog, instantly appearing frustrated as McKenzie danced around him in the early rounds, before then gradually forcing his way back into the fight against the spirited efforts of the challenger, who simply would not be denied.
Immediately post-fight, social media was awash with cries of “robbery!,” prompting Warren to now lend his own voice to the chorus of those disappointed by the split draw scores of 113-115, 115-113 and 114-114 that saw new champion Ramirez retain his title.
“It was an exceptional performance from McKenzie,” Warren said. “I think he well won the fight and did more than Ramirez. He only came into the fight with 11 days’ notice, but gave it everything.
“I will write to the IBF about an immediate rematch which I believe is only fair,” he added.
Speaking after the fight, a clearly disappointed McKenzie could only say;
“The only thing that is hurt are my hands and my faith in the IBF.”
Ramirez had been due to challenge Cuban champion Yoann Pablo Hernandez, yet was upgraded to full champion status when Hernandez was stripped for again seeking a postponement of the Oct 2nd date, prompting McKenzie to step in late doors as challenger to Ramirez.