THE controversial judging that cost Irish middleweight Michael O’Reilly a place at the Olympic Games has shocked boxing, but the fight stats are even more startling.
O’Reilly was adjudged to have lost to Egypt’s Hossam Abdin on a unanimous decision in the 75kg box-off for a place at Rio 2016 at the World Elite Championships in Doha, Qatar on Wednesday night.
However, most observers believe that O’Reilly clearly won the fight for an Olympic berth and their views are backed up by an an experienced Irish Amateur Boxing Association bout analyst.
His forensic analysis of the bout found that O’Reilly hit the target with 60% more punches than his opponent.
O’Reilly connected with 36 punches against 22 for Abdin and landed more punches in each of the three rounds.
Moreover, O’Reilly threw twice as many punches in the first round as his opponent. The three judges went with Abdin 29-28 after three, three-minute rounds.
The top three middleweights in Doha qualify for Rio 2016 and Wednesday’s O’Reilly v Abdin bout was a third place box-off between the losing semi-finalists.
Wednesday’s result saw O’Reilly finish in fourth position, although if Cuba’s Arlen Lopez, who won gold, takes his qualification from the World Series of Boxing earlier this year, O’Reilly will finish in the top three and qualify for Rio.
The deadline for the registration for the first draft of boxers for Rio 2016 is December 4 and if Lopez takes the Doha place, O’Reilly, who won bronze in Doha, is out and will have to qualify in Europe early next year.
The Portlaoise Boxing Club middleweight is the current European Games champion.
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