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17th Aug 2016

Billy Walsh mirror’s everyone’s thoughts on Michael Conlan’s Rio robbery

Shocking decision

Ben Kiely

Just like everyone else bar those three judges in Rio, Billy Walsh believes Michael Conlan should be in the Olympic semi-final.

We hate to be the bearer of bad news to any rock dwellers who may have missed yesterday’s big Olympic controversy, but Michael Conlan was sent crashing out of the quarter-finals yesterday despite beating Vladimir Nikitin over three rounds.

The reaction to the result from fans and experts alike just goes to show how much of an injustice was carried out on Tuesday. All three judges gave the Russian the unanimous decision, meaning Conlan missed out on at least a bronze medal, which would have been his second Olympic medal following his bronze-winning performance in London four years ago.

Conlan was also the Irish boxing team’s last hope of winning a medal in Rio after all his pugilist compatriots all bowed out before reaching the semi-final stage of their respective events.

USA coach Billy Walsh joined in the criticism of the judging after his light-welterweight Gary Russell lost a quarter-final to Uzbekistan’s Fazliddin Gaibnazarov on a split decision. He voiced his fury at the judging to the Sydney Morning Herald.

“Anybody can be beaten here and the judging has been atrocious.”

“The last time I saw it as bad was in Seoul in 1988 when Roy Jones got robbed in the final. I saw Michael Conlan’s first two rounds in the changing area and he completely out-boxed this guy. He out-fought him in the second round and out-boxed him in the first. And he didn’t get it.”

Walsh was the head of Ireland’s High performance Unit for 12 years but left Ireland earlier this year after failing to reach agreement with the IABA over a new contract.

On the latest episode of the GAA Hour Hurling Show Wooly and the lads reflect on a monumental weekend of action. Listen below or subscribe here on iTunes.