LONDON, Aug 5: Fuming they might be after medal hope Manoj Kumar’s controversial ouster from the Olympic Games, but the Indian boxing team decided against filing a protest against the pre-quarterfinal loss.
Manoj (64kg) cried “cheating” as he exited from the Games ring after being distinctly unlucky in getting points in a bout won by British boxer Thomas Stalker 20-16 last night.
“It’s a heartbreaking loss and the result was unfair but we will not protest because we don’t want to be seen as bad losers,” said an Indian boxing contingent member.
Manoj was left flummoxed after his bout and said, “It doesn’t look fair because he was going in one direction and the scores 7-4 and 9-4 to him don’t justify that.
“It doesn’t look like an Olympic Games but more like a district competition because if it’s Great Britain in the ring it doesn’t matter who’s against them. It’s like a district competition where there’s lots of cheating, cheating, cheating,” the dejected Commonwealth Games gold-medallist added.
Stalker won the first round 7-4 and maintained his lead by winning the second round 9-5. The Indian then launched an all out attack in the third and last round which he claimed 7-4 but some debatable judging ultimately saw him leave the arena disappointed.
The Indian camp understandably was furious with the decision and strongly felt that Manoj was at the receiving end of some dubious point calls.
India’s Cuban coach Blas Iglesias Fernandez said Manoj should have won the other two rounds as well as he fought in the same manner.
“The last round was 7-4 (to Kumar). Why no other rounds? All rounds were the same. It was very poor judging,” he said.
On whether his boxer was “robbed”, Fernandez said “I think so.”
National coach Gurbaksh Singh Sandhu said “My athlete was extraordinary. You saw for yourself what happened.”
The Indians have been at the wrong side of judging at the ongoing Games, losing a protest filed against Sumit Sangwan’s (81kg) close first-round exit.
Later, Vikas Krishan (69kg) was ousted despite being declared a winner initially after his American opponent won an appeal against his triumph.
The matter is now in the Court of Arbitration but the chances of anything happening in the Indian’s favour appear remote ahead of the last-eight stage starting on Tuesday. Agencies