Aussie Boxer Andrew Moloney Robbed Of World Title In 'One Of The Worst Calls Ever'
Honestly, you have to question whether the judges were actually watching the replays.
Andrew Moloney's shot at redemption against WBA Super Flyweight champ Joshua Franco was cut agonisingly short after one controversial incident saw the bout descend into carnage.
Aussie boxer Moloney was looking to avenge his first professional defeat after losing his Super Flyweight title to Franco back in June.
But in the highly-anticipated rematch in Las Vegas, die-hard boxing tragics and even the casual fans are saying that he was robbed - an even that could be an understatement.
Things started brightly for Moloney.
He out-landed his opponent 25 shots to 11 in the very first round.
And in the second he had Franco chasing shadows.
The Australian was well and truly dominating and it looked like he was on the verge of having his hand raised when Franco was struggling to come out of his corner for the start of the third round.
Swelling around his eye had many (including Moloney himself) believing that the fight would be stopped and the belt would switch hands once again.
But boy, weren't we all wrong.
"I've been involved in many headbutts and I've never seen that happen." @Timbradleyjr says he knows a thing or two about headbutts and Moloney didn't land one. #CrawfordBrook pic.twitter.com/3n80C16jaE
- ESPN Ringside (@ESPNRingside) November 15, 2020
Referee Russell Mora ruled that Franco's eye had closed up completely and he was unable to compete any longer.
But despite countless replays showing that it was actually a powerful jab that had done all the damage, the Nevada State Athletic Commission officials ruled that an accidental Moloney headbutt had inflicted the eye injury.
What makes the decision even worse is that they took almost 30 minutes to review the entire incident.
My god did this man get robbed. One of the worst calls ever. What is the point of an instant replay when this can happen? https://t.co/MTZBJiwsvm
- Joe Rogan (@joerogan) November 15, 2020
Rules under the Nevada State Athletic Commission state that four rounds of boxing need to be completed before the scorecards come into effect, meaning that the fight was declared a 'no decision' and Franco subsequently retained his title.
The result sent fans and experts into meltdown.
UFC reporter Ariel Helwani tweeted: "Man, this is heartbreaking. Impossible not to feel for Moloney. Not right. He won."
While The Athletic's Mike Coppinger added: "Russell Mora calling it an accidental clash of heads after Joshua Franco's swollen shut left eye forced stoppage, but it clearly was a punch. Should be a TKO victory for Andrew Moloney."
As UFC commentator Joe Rogan tweeted: "My god did this man get robbed. One of the worst calls ever. What is the point of an instant replay when this can happen?"
Even NBA superstar Trae Young chimed in: "There wasn't a headbutt?!? What we doin now boxing.... Moloney was going to win."
Teddy Atlas on the Moloney Franco decision and it taking 30 minutes pic.twitter.com/DWbFfy6Fph
- C (@CharneIo) November 15, 2020
Russell Mora calling it an accidental clash of heads after Joshua Franco's swollen shut left eye forced stoppage, but it clearly was a punch. Should be a TKO victory for Andrew Moloney
- Mike Coppinger (@MikeCoppinger) November 15, 2020
Man, this is heartbreaking. Impossible not to feel for Moloney. Not right. He won.
- Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) November 15, 2020
"This is an absolute disgrace. There was no headbutt. Moloney should be the champion," Bob Arum says.
- Lance Pugmire (@pugboxing) November 15, 2020
There wasn't a headbutt?!? What we doin now boxing.... Moloney was going to win
- Trae Young (@TheTraeYoung) November 15, 2020
Only Boxing could still cheat this much even with instant replay. Moloney was robbed. @espn @AndrewMoloney
- Charles V Payne (@cvpayne) November 15, 2020
Don't blame Franco. He just fought. He didn't make the ruling. But Moloney got royally screwed. #FrancoMoloney2 @TonyTolj
- Dan Rafael (@DanRafael1) November 15, 2020
That might be the single worst instance of instant replay in sports history.
What a joke.
This Moloney fight decision (by the Nevada state athletic commission) was bologna
Bring on Bud Crawford already.
- Jorge Sedano (@Sedano) November 15, 2020
This combination of words probably shouldn't make sense but here goes: Dame Helen Mirren has come out in support of Australian junior bantamweight Andrew Moloney pic.twitter.com/X1CJlB8y47
- Alex McClintock (@axmcc) November 15, 2020
The emotions from @AndrewMoloney following last night's controversial finish to #FrancoMoloney2 were incredibly raw.
After things got heated post-fight, will the two dance a third time? pic.twitter.com/HuNatg2ExQ
- Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) November 15, 2020
After lengthy instantly replay, Franco-Moloney is called a no decision. #CrawfordBrook pic.twitter.com/CUbRmBv0Bk
- ESPN Ringside (@ESPNRingside) November 15, 2020
As for Moloney, the expressions plastered over his face painted a picture.
But after the bout, the Aussie let the entire boxing world know of his true feelings.
"I can't believe that they took this away from me," he said.
"I've trained my arse off the last five months, been away from my family.
"I can't believe they didn't give it to me... I can't believe they're taking this away from me."
It's understood Moloney is planning on appealing the decision with the hope of getting a rematch.
Featured Image Credit: Twitter/ESPN
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