29
Nov
2020

Terry O’Connor guilty before proven innocent, official a social media victim

Phil Jay 24/10/2020
Terry O'Connor boxing judge

Mark Robinson

As World Boxing News previously stated, a British boxing judge accused of using a mobile phone at ringside earlier this month did not have a device.

Terry O’Connor, a former boxer-turned-referee and ringside official, was vilified on social media and took shots from several high-profile names.

Even the promoter of the event O’Connor was working, Lewis Ritson vs. Miguel Vazquez, called for him to be sacked if the TV still proved true.

As it turned out, Eddie Hearn did admit he was wrong, whilst the likes of Lou DiBella, Tony Bellew, Teddy Atlas, and others proved to have no base for criticism.

O’Connor was taking a glance at his scorecard, which he keeps under his armpit during rounds.

A further uproar over the Birmingham man’s score totals for the bout eventually took center stage, although the British Boxing Board of Control cleared O’Connor of all charges.

“British Boxing Board of Control Judge Mr. Terry O’Connor appeared before the Stewards of the Board to discuss his performance at the tournament held on 17th October 2020 at the East of England Showground Arena, Peterborough.

“Allegations made on social media and the print media as to Mr. O’Connor using a mobile telephone or similar handheld device were considered.

“Following extensive consideration of footage and Mr. O’Connor’s evidence supplied, the Stewards are satisfied that Mr. O’Connor was not in possession of any telephone or handheld device whilst carrying out his duties as a Judge in the contest between Lewis Ritson and Miguel Vazquez.

“His scoring of the said bout was not affected in any way.

TERRY O’CONNOR

“Also, Mr. O’Connor’s scoring of the bout was considered. Judging a contest is subjective.

“Following Mr. O’Connor’s explanation of how he scored the bout, the Stewards are satisfied that Mr. O’Connor’s final score reflected his own opinion of the contest.”


Trial by social media once again rules over innocence. The situation needs to change moving forward to give professionals a platform to keep their reputations intact until a decision is made.

A veteran of over 1500 bouts as a third man, O’Connor is set to back in action at a UK event shortly.

His image has taken a battering, though, firmly through no fault of his own.

Phil Jay is Editor of WBN. An Auxiliary member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay.

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