I Want A Rematch, Ghana’s Agbeko Demands After Losing To Mares In U.S.

Joseph Agbeko (left) and Abner Mares,

Joseph Agbeko (left) and Abner Mares,

Ghana’s Joseph Agbeko is demanding an immediate rematch after a serious backlash over referee Russell Mora’s performance in Agbeko’s bantamweight unification with Abner Mares at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas.

Joseph Agbeko (left) and Abner Mares,

Mares’ hard road to a world championship reached its destination Saturday, with a huge 11th-round push to the finish line by referee Mora.

Mares defeated champion Joseph Agbeko by majority decision in a thrilling clash for the International Boxing Federation, IBF, bantamweight title at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino.

Judges Oren Shellenberger and Adalaide Byrd each scored the bout 115-111 for Mares, and C.J. Ross had it 113-113.

The scoring was spoiled by Mora’s decisions, with the worst gaffe being his 11th-round decision to award Mares (22-0-1) a knockdown when it was obvious the already warned challenger from Hawaiian Gardens threw a hard left uppercut that definitely qualified as a low blow.

Instead of deducting a point from Mares and avoiding pain to a sensitive area, Agbeko lost the round by a 10-8 score.

“I had two opponents in the ring: Abner Mares and the referee,” the Ghanaian boxer said.

Had Mora not given Mares credit for the knockdowns, and deducted points from him in the 10th and 11th rounds, Shellenberger and Byrd would’ve scored the fight a draw.

Mora stunned the crowd by not previously taking away a point from Mares after other blows below the belt, and even his first-round ruling that Agbeko was knocked down by a Mares left looked amiss when replays showed Mares had stepped on Agbeko’s foot right before the shot.

Agbeko lost his footing and stumbled through the ropes.

“The first knockdown was clean,” Mares said.

Besides the two poor knockdown calls, there were numerous low blows landed by Mares and Mora never penalised him. After 12 rounds of action, Mares won a 12-round majority decision to win Agbeko’s IBF title. Agbeko is demanding an immediate rematch.

“I was getting hit with some very bad low blows. Mora wasn’t warning Mares or doing anything about it. The referee should not have to steal my title and give it to Mares. I demand an immediate rematch. This fight doesn’t make Mares a champion…no way,” Agbeko said.

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