Abner Mares Defeats Joseph Agbeko in Highly Controversial Fight
by Jorge Alarcon-Swaby: In Showtime's Bantamweight Tournament finale, Abner Mares defeated Joseph Agbeko in one of the most controversial fights in recent years. Mares put on a good performance but played foul the entire fight by hitting Agbeko with continuous low blows. Estimates show Mares hit Agbeko below the belt anywhere between 15 to 20 times.
That most disappointing part of the bout was the referee Russell Mora who did not take a point away from Mares due to his low blows. Mares to received frequent warnings from Mora, yet he continued to hit Agbeko with low blows.
The ugliest part of the night came in the 11th round when Mares once again hit Agbeko with a monstrous low blow that sent him to ground, this time referee Mora did step in and called time but to the surprise of everyone proceeded to a 10 count on Agbeko calling the low blow an actual knockdown.
As Agbeko made the count he complained to the referee as the round ended and as he reached his corner Agbeko's trainer approached the referee aggressively to complain and had to be stopped by security. As the fight ended in round 12 Agbeko felt disappointed in the referee's job and he him himself had to be sustained by security from approaching the referee.
Al Bernstein and Jim Gray also expressed their great disappointment in the referee Russell Mora's job calling it the worse performance by a referee in the last 15 years, considering all the fights Al Bernstein has covered and the fact that he doesn't like to complain about referee's, that gotta go be one hell of a bad job, and indeed it was I think. Feeling cheated Agbeko's team has said that they will protest the fight and demand an immediate rematch.
Abner Mares fought a decent fight against a very thought opponent but this win will forever be tarnished by how many low blows he landed to get the win.