Belfast Telegraph

UK Website Of The Year

Home Sport Olympics

Tyson Fury: Michael Conlan has been robbed of a gold

Fuming Michael can make a great pro, says Fury

By David Kelly

Published 17/08/2016

You got it wrong: Michael Conlan shows what he thinks of the judges' decision in Rio
You got it wrong: Michael Conlan shows what he thinks of the judges' decision in Rio
Michael John Conlan of Ireland during his fight with Vladimir Nikitin (not pictured) of Russia in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Blood covered Russia's Vladimir Nikitin reacts to winning against Ireland's Michael John Conlan during the Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 match at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Riocentro - Pavilion 6 in Rio de Janeiro on August 16, 2016. AFP/Getty Images
TOPSHOT - Ireland's Michael John Conlan (R) fights Russia's Vladimir Nikitin during the Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 match at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Riocentro - Pavilion 6 in Rio de Janeiro on August 16, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri CORTEZYURI CORTEZ/AFP/Getty Images
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Vladimir Nikitin of Russia is introduced to his fight with Michael John Conlan (not pictured) of Ireland in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Vladimir Nikitin (R) of Russia fights Michael John Conlan of Ireland in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Michael John Conlan (L) of Ireland fights Vladimir Nikitin of Russia in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Vladimir Nikitin (R) of Russia fights Michael John Conlan of Ireland in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Michael John Conlan (L) of Ireland fights Vladimir Nikitin of Russia in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Vladimir Nikitin (L) of Russia throws a left on Michael John Conlan of Ireland in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Vladimir Nikitin (R) of Russia fights Michael John Conlan of Ireland in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Vladimir Nikitin (L) of Russia throws a left on Michael John Conlan of Ireland in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Vladimir Nikitin (L) of Russia celebrates his victory over Michael John Conlan of Ireland in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Michael John Conlan of Ireland jestures to the crowd after his defeat to Vladimir Nikitin (not pictured) of Russia in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Vladimir Nikitin (L) of Russia throws a left on Michael John Conlan of Ireland in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Vladimir Nikitin (L) of Russia celebrates his victory over Michael John Conlan of Ireland in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Vladimir Nikitin of Russia celebrates his victory over Michael John Conlan (not pictured) of Ireland in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 16: Michael John Conlan of Ireland jestures to the crowd after his defeat to Vladimir Nikitin (not pictured) of Russia in the boxing Men's Bantam (56kg) Quarterfinal 1 on Day 11 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Riocentro on August 16, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Ireland's Michael John Conlan, bottom, gestures after losing a men's bantamweight 56-kg quarterfinals boxing match by a decision against Russia's Vladimir Nikitin at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

World heavyweight champion Tyson Fury has come out blasting after Michael Conlan was robbed of an Olympic medal in Rio.

Bantamweight Conlan’s defeat at the hands of Russian Vladimir Nikitin brought a hail of criticism raining down on the World governing body AIBA and their judges who somehow decided the Belfast man had lost a bout which everyone else believed he clearly won.

The quarter-final loss means World amateur champion Conlan will leave the Games with his dream of a gold medal shattered but Fury believes the future is bright for the 24-year-old.

“I was doing an interview about three hours before the fight and in it I was saying how corrupt amateur boxing is and then we saw Michael Conlan suffering a disgraceful decision,” said Fury.

More: Decision was wrong... on so many levels

“I really believe that before they have the fights the medals have already been determined unless there’s a knockout of course and in amateur boxing you don’t get too many knockouts because of the big gloves and even more so at the lighter weights.

“But Michael has a very promising career as a professional and I wouldn’t mind managing him myself as it happens!”

Furious Conlan has made it clear he will never box amateur again.

More: Fists of fury as our Michael beats his opponent... but not the judges

Indeed, Conlan called AIBA "one of the most corrupt organisations in the world" after losing a unanimous decision to the Russian, just 24 hours after the heavyweight final when another Russian, Evgeny Tishchenko, was incredibly given the verdict over Kazakhstan's Vassiliy Levit.

World heavyweight champion Tyson Fury
World heavyweight champion Tyson Fury

"I am absolutely devastated; my Olympic dream was robbed from me," said Conlan, whose dad John was in his corner.

"F****** cheats. That's me, I'll never box for AIBA again, they're cheating b******s, they're paying everybody. I have a big career ahead of me. These ones are known for being cheats, they have always been cheats. Amateur boxing stinks from the core right to the top.

"My boxing dream has been ruined and I will never box in an AIBA competition again because, I feel, they are one of the most corrupt organisations in the world.

"Whoever pays the most money wins."

While Fury expects Conlan to embark on a highly successful professional career, the heavyweight champion did suggest that this defeat will have hit the Belfast man in the pocket.

"It's all so political and it's cost Michael a fortune in signing-on fees and early purses and whatever sponsorship he may have been able to get as an Olympic gold medallist," added Fury.

"I couldn't put a figure on it but his earning potential at the start of his career has been hit by this decision. Not only have they hurt Michael but they have robbed Ireland of a gold medal.

"I feel really gutted for him but out of every negative situation there are positives and I should know that because I've had my own ups and downs and... I wouldn't be here without taking the positives.

"I've seen a lot of robberies in these championships. It's only when it's someone you know or from your country that it becomes a big deal but other boxers have suffered as well."

Meanwhile, Conlan dismissed any suggestion there is a problem with Irish boxing despite the lack of medals from Rio.

"Some people are saying it's been a horrendous week for Irish boxing, but I think it has been a horrendous week of scoring for Irish boxing," he added.

"We haven't had any favours, we must not have paid enough money to the AIBA this time.

"I watched the heavyweight final after what happened to Katie (Taylor), but I never thought it would happen to me. AIBA are killing people's lifelong work. One thing is for sure, I will not box in AIBA competition again, even if they offered five million."

In a statement, the AIBA responded to Conlan, saying: "These statements are foundless but he's free to have his opinion."

Once he returns from Rio, Conlan will then start weighing up his move into the professional ranks, joining brother Jamie who is the reigning Commonwealth super-flyweight champion with World title aspirations.

Belfast Telegraph

How to Complain

If you have a complaint about the editorial content of the Belfast Telegraph or Sunday Life then contact the Editor here. If you are not satisfied with the response provided then you can contact the Independent Press Standards Organisation here

Your Comments

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting? customercare@belfasttelegraph.co.uk

Read More

From Belfast Telegraph