Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 21 October 2014

Furious Hearn calls for rematch

Amir Khan (left) and Paul McCloskey
Amir Khan lands a left hook on Paul McCloskey's chin last night
Amir Khan (left) and Paul McCloskey

Amir Khan rejected Barry Hearn's angry calls for a rematch against Paul McCloskey after the world title challenger complained bitterly about Saturday night's controversial cuts stoppage.

WBA light-welterweight champion Khan was winning widely in Manchester before an accidental clash of heads in the sixth round left McCloskey with a cut over his left eye. Referee Luis Pabon called in the doctor to examine the cut and on his advice, called a halt the the contest with the outcome decided on the scorecards and Khan was awarded every round by all three judges.

But McCloskey's team were left fuming, claiming their plan had always been for the Ulsterman to win it late in the fight and the challenger's promoter Hearn told Press Association Sport: "I don't think there's any doubt that there should be a rematch. McCloskey's been robbed."

He added: "The cut is almost non-existent, when you look at it. It's fanciful to think that was a dangerous cut.

"From what I saw of that referee he should never be allowed in a boxing ring again. You don't take away people's dreams like that and rob the paying public.

"Amir Khan is a decent man and he would gain a lot of friends around the world if he did the right thing (and grant a rematch).

"It's an embarrassment for us all to be involved in a fight like this where we are so clearly robbing the public. It was the most staggering decision I've ever seen at any ring at any time anywhere in the world.

At a chaotic post-fight press conference Khan's side rejected the prospect of a rematch, though McCloskey's co-promoter Eddie Hearn - Barry's son - claimed the British Boxing Board of Control have promised to open an investigation.

Khan, though, was bullish and said: "He didn't win one round. I was hurting him, I wasn't tired, and I promise you if it had gone two more rounds he would have been knocked out.

"There is no point in a rematch."

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