World Boxing Association Punishes Judge Over Controversial Scorecards

Published 08/12/2021, 1:19 PM EDT
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MAY 31: Anthony Joshua stands on the scale against Andy Ruiz Jr during their official weigh in at Madison Square Garden on May 31, 2019 in New York City. They will fight for Joshua’s IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight titles at Madison Square Garden on June 1, 2019 (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)


The World Boxing Association has suspended the 2019 female judge of the year, Gloria Martinez Rizzo, for six months following a controversial scorecard in the Mykal Fox vs. Gabriel Maestre interim welterweight title fight.

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They have found old tweets made by the judge which they deemed to be racist. Hence the six-month suspension. Rizzo will now undergo a thorough investigation and may face expulsion from judging WBA-sanctioned fights.

DIRIYAH, SAUDI ARABIA – DECEMBER 07: Anthony Joshua celebrates victory over Andy Ruiz Jr during the IBF, WBA, WBO & IBO World Heavyweight Title Fight between Andy Ruiz Jr and Anthony Joshua during the Matchroom Boxing ‘Clash on the Dunes’ show at the Diriyah Season on December 07, 2019 in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

Gloria Martinez Rizzo under investigation

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The WBA named Rizzo their female judge of the year in 2019 on Twitter. They also tagged her account, which led to many fans digging up tweets from the past where she rants about African American athletes negatively.

This past Saturday, Rizzo turned in a bizarre 117-110 card in favor of Maestre after their Welterweight bout. Mykal Fox scored a second-round knockdown and seemed to be the clear-cut winner in the upset. Surprisingly, Maestre led on the scorecards of the other two judges as well.

Judge John Mariano scored the fight a 115-112, Judge David Singh scored the fight 114-113 both in favor of Maestre. “We saw her score was wrong despite the unanimous decision,” WBA President Gilberto Mendoza said.

“Those comments she made in the past – she might be expelled by the WBA. … I don’t support any kind of racism. I believe in equality. …Sports are the only thing that brings equality into the world sometimes.”

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Mendoza plans to meet Gloria Martinez Rizzo in Miami to discuss her actions and the repercussions she will face. She faces possible expulsion from the WBA. The judging was just one part of the bizarre WBA bout.

Rizzo’s husband Ricardo Rizzo is a boxing promoter who has ties with the WBA. Maestre is a WBA-favored fighter and also had a WBA official working in his corner. Fox’s coach spotted out that they had illegally taped Maestre’s gloves.

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They pointed it out to the referee, who forced Maestre’s corner to fix the tape. The referee wondered how they approved the gloves in such a state in the first place.

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Allan Binoy

240 articles

Allan Binoy is a Combat Sports Author at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing a bachelor's degree in English Literature. Allan is a semi-professional football player for Diego Juniors FC.

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