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27th Jul 2021

“An act of absolute madness” – Olympic boxer attempts to bite his opponent’s ear

Lee Costello

All young boxers grow up wanting to be Mike Tyson, but this is taking it a bit far.

Inevitably this is gong to draw the obvious comparisons to Mike Tyson, who famously bit off a piece of Evander Holyfield’s ear during their world title bout.

However, unlike Tyson, Youness Baalla does not have the skill, power, speed, or legendary status, so if this is his only common trait with Iron Mike, then it is not a good one.

During his loss to New Zealand’s David Nyika, the Moroccan appeared to try and bite his opponents ear.

It is common when in the clinch, and both fighters are wrestling for space to throw their shots on the inside, that accidental head clashes occur, but you can clearly see Baalla open his mouth and attempt to gnaw at his opponent.

After the fight Nyika told New Zealand TV presenter Kristina Eddy, he thought Baalla was going for his cheek.

“I didn’t think he’d get away with it. He tried to bite my cheekbone … he probably just got a mouthful of sweat.”

Remarkably, Baalla only received a warning from the referee, but there may yet be further consequences for his actions on reviewal.

The commentator during the fight probably summed it up best.

“That could have been an act of absolute madness.”

Nyika won via unanimous decision to qualify for the quarter-finals, where he will fight Belarus’ Uladzislau Smiahlikau for a place in the final four.