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Post by Derbymanc on Wed 18 Oct 2017, 16:32


The last month or so has seen Judging, once again come under scrutiny and for the call to once again be shouted that something needs to change (It quickly goes away again but it’s a constant that’s there.)

After arguing with my peers on what constitutes a good judge and what scores should be based on, I’ve come to the conclusion that none of us actually have a clue. It’s very difficult to find it written down by any of the organisations (other than AIBA) on what they consider the general scoring criteria and what they prefer to see, so it’s left open to interpretation. Now normally I’d say that this is a good thing, as some of us prefer defensive work, some of us aggressiveness and others on generalities like work rate, style over substance etc. Alas this ‘interpretation’ has led to some ludicrous score lines, (the obvious being Canelo/GGG (I had Canelo by one, but couldn’t argue with GGG, I will argue with that 118 scorecard though, I’ve also seen a shocking decision in Germany and well, look and you’ll spot some too.)

A close card can always be argued for and against the boxer you prefer but some of these score lines have taken the sport into joke territory, and with the Alvarez one, had a real chance to put boxing back on the front pages legitimately after Maysomebody against Connors someat or other dominated for the last few months. Alas it was on the front pages but for all the wrong reasons and once again fans were asking themselves is it worth putting all this time and effort into something that seemingly isn’t as straightforward as it should be.

Continued at
https://topclassboxing.co.uk/2017/10/18/judging-what-is-it-good-for-ummm-were-not-sure/

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Post by Guest on Wed 18 Oct 2017, 19:05

I would have preferred the "what is it good for?" Subtitle, but if your didn't use it here on 606 out of respect for my subtitle of the same -ish- "WBO What is it good For?",thanks for that.

Well I have wondered why the model is, we work backwards from a ten score.For all the possibilities of a round of boxing we are left with a 10/9, 10/8, or very occasionally a 10/7.
It seems obvious to me that we can grade a round better by grading it 1 to 10.
Should the result be highly controversial, then and only then we should use stats to decide whether to overturn a decision.
Why don't results get overturned? The judges have a few minutes to get their act together a lot if the tine if it's gone 12 rounds,and recently we have seen some embarrassing mistakes as a consequence.
But boxing thrives on immediacy and perhaps ultimately it thrives on the controversy also.

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Post by TRUSSMAN66 on Wed 18 Oct 2017, 20:35

Good article Derby..

Judging for me = less is more..

Bollox to all this criteria like Defence..Generalship etc which gives poor/corrupt judges an out..

Just one criteria...Who is the most effective ?

Like Clinton wriggling out of soft questions in his scandal with Lewinsky because of soft questions...Simple is better !!

Just ask him if she sucked his c**k..

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Post by Guest on Wed 25 Oct 2017, 23:27

Depends what you mean by "effective"! ; ) It's all ultimately objectivity unless we go electronic.
As Bill said, "It depends what the meaning of "is"is."

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Post by melv500 on Thu 26 Oct 2017, 09:46

Interesting article and opinions. I think everyone makes a valid point and it would be impossible to make everyone judge in the same way and I think that’s a good thing as it may favour certain fighters over others just on style.

The thing I wanted to ask is does anyone have insight on how judges are promoted to bigger events and also how are they judged themselves? How are they demoted and what measures are put in place retrospectively to stop bad judges repeating the same mistakes? I think even if you do look at fights a different way then there is no reason there should be such discrepancies with cards of the same fight eg GGG v Canelo. The card in favour of Canelo was plain incompetence and the judge in question should be scrutinised at least for it....

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Post by Derbymanc on Thu 26 Oct 2017, 10:14

I wanted to focus more on that to be honest Melv and then as per normal i went off on a tangent. I was really flummoxed by the fact there seems to be nothing by the pros on what a judge is required to do or give points on

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Post by Guest on Thu 26 Oct 2017, 10:50

Yeah, the woman who scored in Lewis Holyfield 1, I think her name may have been O' Connor,after she scored a round to Evander that could not have been based on any actual evidence, and later said "Lewis had his back to me so I couldn't see what he was doing "(general incredulity followed)...the media fished around for information on her and she seemed to have only nominal experience of being a judge.I find it incredible that a person could be elevated to the biggest stage there is on their profession ,from out of nowhere.
Ok ,there was a huge whiff of Don King about it,but it's not the only example of this happening.
In other words,a judge can have minimal experience and get to work in a major prizefight.In football the refs are constantly monitored but in boxing it seems that any old moron can appear out of the blue.

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Post by melv500 on Thu 26 Oct 2017, 11:20

Haha Derby an interesting tangent none the less.

O'Connor stated Lewis only had his back to her??? That statement alone just shows she clearly has no understanding of boxing in the slightest. Also if that was true then it would surely be impossible to see anything Holyfield was doing as Lewis is much bigger?

I am glad boxing has never gone down the route of rescoring fights or ruling no contests unless there is hard evidence of cheating or corruption. I genuinely think that would be bring the entire sport into disarray. Also I understand how judges can get swayed by partisan crowds and I can see why judges tend to lean towards champions when scoring very close rounds. I think that is the human factor and fighters are prepared for that. However boxing is tough enough sport as it is so when just plain incompetence is shown in judging I think its important for the fighters and the sport that governing bodies are seen to be doing something. Maybe not publicly vilifying the judge in question but at least demoting to lower grade fights.

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Post by catchweight on Thu 26 Oct 2017, 20:41

I dont think ambiguos scoring criteria is to blame for the Alvarez / Golovkin cards. The fight simply wasnt scored on the level. Favouritism is rife in boxing. Boxers like Alvarez consistently benefit from favourable judging giving them an unfair advantage.

It happens every weekend all over the world. The consistent favouring of fighters due to home advantage, marketabilty, promotional connections etc is deeply ingrained into boxing. Rather than conscienous efforts made to curtail this, its moves in the other direction to the point where its accepted and almost encouraged as just part of the game.

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Post by Guest on Thu 26 Oct 2017, 20:48

If the Joshua fight were to be very even,we all know that there's no way he is not getting a home decision-even in Wales.

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Post by catchweight on Thu 26 Oct 2017, 20:52

Even if the Joshua fight was not particularly even and in the unlikely event Joshua was comortably outpointed, I would still expect him to get the decision.

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Post by Derbymanc on Fri 27 Oct 2017, 09:49

But you see Catchy if there wasn't such ambiguity within the scoring criteria then there'd be less room to maneouvre for judges to weedle out of bad cards.

I'm trying to put something together about the home and away issues within boxing as you rightly put it's so ingrained into boxing that it's seen as normal and is often defended.

I think with a fairer system you'd see a lot more split decisions, with the inclusion of a computerized stat count as one of the judges you'd also be rewarded for landing more punches whilst knowing that it's not the only criteria you need.


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Post by melv500 on Fri 27 Oct 2017, 10:50

Derbymanc wrote:But you see Catchy if there wasn't such ambiguity within the scoring criteria then there'd be less room to maneouvre for judges to weedle out of bad cards.

I'm trying to put something together about the home and away issues within boxing as you rightly put it's so ingrained into boxing that it's seen as normal and is often defended.

I think with a fairer system you'd see a lot more split decisions, with the inclusion of a computerized stat count as one of the judges you'd also be rewarded for landing more punches whilst knowing that it's not the only criteria you need.


To play Devils advocate with the computerised scoring. They are still run by a human who needs to score if a punch landed or not so you could say they are still open to incompetence or dare I say cheating. Bad decisions still happen in the amateurs. RJJ in Seoul 1988 springs straight to mind. Also AJ had a bit of a gift at 2012 if memory serves me right.

I am not a massive fan of who lands the most being given the fight because its about effective punches too in the Pros. Macklin v Sturm is a good example of this. Macklin definitely looked to outland Sturm however was just throwing punches a bit wildly IMO whereas Sturm landed much cleaner better though out shots which is why for me he won the fight (not trying to open a can of worms).

Having said all that is it was just one card out of 3 then maybe it could work as it judges on a different angle, after all boxing is about hitting and not being hit. I just think if the purpose was to stop bad judging then its just as easy to get a bad judge doing that then with the traditional way.

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Post by catchweight on Sat 28 Oct 2017, 00:48

Im not a fan of computerised scoring. I think its open to the same subjective manipulation the current scoring system. Instead of scoring rounds, judges are scoring punches landed. Still subjective and doesnt really differentiate quality or effectiveness of punching.

I think where scoring in boxing could be improved is regards rewarding rounds won decisively. These should be more valuable than close rounds where there is little or nothing to seperate two boxers. Its seems inappropriate that a clearly won round is worth the same as a round that could feasibly be scored either way.

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Post by Derbymanc on Sat 28 Oct 2017, 09:36

I'm sure we should be able to come up with something in the glove that gives point for a shot landed although it would obviously need a bit more work than what we have now.

I'd only have it as one judge for that though, it means that a fighter has to push the fight if he knows he's not landing enough he has to push on forward throught the middle of the fight. Plus you'd still have your human judges to put a personal spin on it (although i'd have the judges from different countries/counties from the boxers) and a clear set of scoring criteria.

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Post by catchweight on Sat 28 Oct 2017, 10:48

Im not sure the technology would be available that could differentiate between punches landed clearly and ones blocked or partially landed. It wouldnt really be able to differntiate between quality punching. 3 or 4 quality shots can be superior to 9 or 10 tippy tappy jabs.

They essentially tried the punch scoring system for a few decades in the amateurs and ultimately I dont think it was any better regarding eliminating controversial or subjective scoring. Although it probably did encourage more action and a certain style of fighting.

As I said above, my prefernce would be for reqarding clearly won rounds as more valuable than close rounds. To prevent situations occuring where there are 9 close rounds, boxer A wins 3 rounds decisevely but still loses because the judges have given most of the close rounds to one fighter.

I also think bad judging and unfair advantages in boxing needs to be just tackled head on for what it is, rather than devising new scoring systems to counter act it. It is inneviteable in close fights that things like home advantage or marektabilty might favour one fighter over another even if strictly that should not be the case. But in boxing it often feels like the winner has been determined before hand and the honus is on one fighter to win so decisely as to overturn the result. The extent to which many fights or fighters appear to be scored with clear favouritism is substantial.

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