Miguel Cotto

Miguel Cotto Victory Over Joshua Clottey Smudged with Controversy

NEW YORK - JUNE 13:  Miguel Cotto exchanges punches with Joshua Clottey during their WBO Welterweight title fight at Madison Square Garden on June 13, 2009 in New York City  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Kenneth RagpalaCorrespondent IJune 14, 2009

The fight for the WBO Welterweight Championship has ended, but not as I expected. I said it would be a split decision victory for Clottey; it went to the other guy instead.

In my previous article, I wrote that Miguel Cotto, whose record now stands at 34-1, would lose the advantage if he failed to knock Joshua Clottey out in the earlier rounds. But, as it turns out, Cotto did send Clottey to the mat via a jab in the first round.

Clottey, who now drops to 34-3, did assert himself in the middle rounds, particularly in the fifth after Cotto got cut in his left eyebrow due to an accidental headbutt.

It was a good fight, but not the one you would have expected from the hype the players and the promoters had built around it.

Most of the fans expected a rain of straights and hooks, but instead they got a splendid display of boxing defense from both fighters throughout the fight.

The earlier rounds were Cotto’s. Then a shift in momentum saw Clottey coming back to life and into the fight. It was indeed a close fight—so close it could have gone either way.

The scorecards seemed to be the focal point in the fight and will serve as a possible source for another boxing controversy.

Judge John McKaie gave the fight to Cotto, 115-112, while Tom Miller saw Clottey winning the fight 114-113. Judge Don Trella scored the bout for Cotto, with a strangely whopping 116-111.

Can anyone explain how the last judge’s score came to be?

Even the media men present in the fight find the score “suspicious.” Clottey claims he was robbed of the victory and demanded a rematch immediately afterwards. He exclaimed that he was chasing Cotto all night long and that the fight should have been his.

A rematch may be deemed necessary, since Cotto’s win over the Ghana native was inconclusive, but regardless of future bouts, tonight is a happy night for Cotto, his team, and his fellow Puerto Ricans.

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