/ 6 January 2012

Amir Khan blames mystery man for title bout loss

Amir Khan Blames Mystery Man For Title Bout Loss

British boxer Amir Khan posted a series of pictures on Twitter on Thursday showing what he says is an unidentified man “interfering” with the WBA fight supervisor during his split-decision loss to American Lamont Peterson in their light-welterweight title bout.

Khan appealed the scoring and raised new questions about last month’s fight on his Twitter feed, pointing out a man wearing a hat who sits down ringside next to WBA supervisor Michael Welsh during the bout. The man is seen leaning over Welsh several times and appears to pick up a scorecard on at least two occasions.

“From round 6 all the way through to round 12 this guy starts to interfere with what Michael (Welsh) is doing,” Khan tweeted.

Khan tweeted that the man’s behaviour is “strictly against the rules,” adding that his team has asked the IBF and fight organisers about the man’s identity without getting a response.

“Who is this guy? And what was he doing?” Khan wrote.

The 25-year-old Englishman lost his IBF and WBA titles in the December 11 defeat in Washington after points were deducted on two occasions for pushing. When filing the appeal, Khan questioned why it took so long for the winner to be announced and claimed the scorecards were changed before the results were read out by the ring announcer.

String of tweets
The IBF said it can’t comment on Khan’s string of tweets before the appeals hearing on January 18. WBA officials could not immediately be reached for comment.

The boxer linked to several still images from TV coverage of the fight showing the man sitting ringside next to Welsh, and another link to a YouTube clip of the bout.

“This is what I meant on how he was interfeering (sic),” Khan wrote in a caption for one picture, which appears to show the man reaching across the table in front of Welsh while peering over his shoulder.

With another picture, he wrote: “This time in round 11 he’s seen here clearly picking up a yellow judges slip.”

Khan’s business manager Asif Vali told Sky Sports News that the boxer simply wants to find out what the man was doing before his appeals hearing.

“We don’t know who the official is,” Vali said. “We’ve asked the question, we’ve written to (organisers) and we’re still waiting for their response, and we’ve written to the IBF and they’ve still not responded.”

Vali added that “there’s obviously something wrong there.”

“If the answers are legitimate, fine, we’ll accept them,” he said. “If they’re not legitimate, then we hope the rematch takes place, and if the rematch takes place, all this can be squashed.” — Sapa-AP