Sitting World Boxing Association President Gilberto Mendoza promised a review of events at the Dubois vs Lerena fight last weekend.
Taking place on the Tyson Fury vs Derek Chisora undercard, Daniel Dubois defeated Kevin Lerena via dubious stoppage.
Before getting his hands raised when Lerena seemingly could continue, Dubois was down three times in the first round.
All over the place, Dubois gained the benefit of the doubt as the timekeeper rang the bell nine seconds early.
As the British Boxing Board of Control oversaw the event, the WBA’s usual three-knockdown rule didn’t apply. This is due to the BBBofC overruling other sanctioning bodies’ stipulations on home soil.
Dubois vs Lerena controversy
Many in the sport don’t agree with this practice as confusion reigned during the contest. Reporters on one side of the Atlantic were asking why the fight wasn’t stopped after the third knockdown. However, even UK Reporters like Ron Lewis didn’t know why Dubois could carry on.
“The WBA indeed used to have a rule that three knockdowns in a round were an automatic stoppage. I can only assume that wasn’t in effect. As Dubois had three counts in the first,” said Lewis.
This led to calls for all sanctioning bodies and territorial boxing agencies to have one set of unified boxing rules.
It also made Mendoza sit up and take notice of the criticism as he promised, “We will definitely review it.”
Dubois got saved from a certain stoppage loss, but he rallied back to give Lerena trouble. Those nine seconds gained in round one worked perfectly to get Dubois out of danger and back to his corner.
Following the instructions of Shane McGuigan, Dubois composed himself and cautiously eased his way through the next round.
He then completed an unlikely turnaround in the third. Lerena was hit by a clubbing right before, seconds from the bell.
Dubois unleashed a barrage of shots, including a brutal left hook and right uppercut. That’s where things get ugly again.
Referee Howard Foster, who has form, stopped the fight even though the bell sounded for the end of the round. It was a shocking decision.
After the fight, one commenter said: “The bell rang ten seconds early in the first to save Dubois.
“Then Lerena takes two rounds off after scoring three knockdowns in the first round? Bit fishy.”
Another stated: “They completely disregarded the three knockdown rule.”
Comments followed from US boxing media, stating the review’s outcome should be a rematch.
“If I’m Kevin Lerena’s team, I petition for a no contest. The first round ended ten seconds early, with Dubois down three times.
“Lerena [also] being KO’d after the bell. Home cooking. UK refereeing pound-for-pound worst in boxing across the board,” said Mark Ortega.
Adam Abramowitz, who wrote an article on the shocking events, added: An important if ultimately futile gesture. At best, they would mandate a rematch.”
We await the results from the WBA.