Judges take centre stage in Golovkin-Alvarez stalemate

Canelo Alvarez, right, on the defensive during Saturday nights Las Vegas bout with Gennady Golovkin. Picture: AFP/Getty.
Canelo Alvarez, right, on the defensive during Saturday nights Las Vegas bout with Gennady Golovkin. Picture: AFP/Getty.
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Gennady Golovkin and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez’s hotly-anticipated world middleweight title showdown ended in a controversial draw in Las Vegas on Saturday night.

The judges scored the bout 118-110 for Alvarez, 115-113 for Golovkin and 114-114 after 12 hard-fought rounds at the T-Mobile Arena, with the first scorecard swiftly sparking outrage on social media.

Alvarez started and finished well, but the hard-hitting Golovkin had much the better of the middle rounds. Neither man went down.

The result – met with boos and disbelief – nevertheless meant 35-year-old Kazakhstani Golovkin retained his WBA, WBC and IBF belts, and remained unbeaten in 38 fights.

Golovkin took to Twitter soon after the bout to post a smiling picture of himself 
celebrating with his belts alongside the words: “The world knows #andstill Thanks to all my fans from all over the world for your support. It means a lot for me.”

The controversial scorecard of judge Adalaide Byrd, who favoured Alvarez 118-110, was met with raised eyebrows, with many Twitter users claiming victory belonged to Golovkin.

Byrd gave Golovkin just two rounds of the fight – the fourth and seventh – with the other ten going to Alvarez.

Former world heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis tweeted: “Both fighters can hold their heads high tonight but this fight wasn’t close to a draw! #canelovsggg”

Both men said in the ring after the decision that they wanted a rematch.

Speaking through a translator, 27-year-old Alvarez said: “Yes, of course, obviously yes, if the people want it, yes.

“He didn’t win. It was a draw. I always said I was going to be a step ahead of him. In the first rounds I came out to see what he had, then I was building from there. I think I won eight rounds.”

Golovkin said: “Look at my belts. I’m still the champion. Of course I want a rematch.”