Wednesday 29 January 2020

Statistics show Irish fighter should have been given win

Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile
Photo by Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Sean McGoldrick

Michael Conlan should have won yesterday's fight against Russian Vladimir Nikitin in Rio, according to statistics revealed by a respected American boxing website Comubox.

According to its data, Conlan threw more punches than the Russian - 365 as opposed to 257. He landed 89 (24.4pc) of these in comparison to Nikitin's 75 (29.25pc).

According to Comubox, the Belfast boxer also threw and landed the greater number of power punches - 89 compared with 75. But it's what happens in each round which determines the outcome of boxing matches.

Interestingly, the statistics do back up the judge's decision to award the first round to Nikitin as he landed 26 of the 72 punches he threw in comparison to 18 of Conlan's 114. But because Conlan's fought mostly off the back foot in that round, most of the punches he threw were jabs which are hard to score with - he still threw 21 jabs compared with two for the Russian.

Once he discovered he was behind, Conlan was forced to be more aggressive and he won the second round on all three judges' cards and this is reflected in the stats. He landed 39 of the 99 punches he threw, compared with Nikitin's 26 of 88. But crucially the computer backs up the theory that Conlan should have been awarded the last round which would have given him the win and a place in the semi-final. He landed 31 of his 126 punches compared with the Russian's 21 of 87.

The site suggests that the judges opted for the Russian because he drew the Irishman into a brawl, but based on punches thrown and landed the Irishman should have prevailed.

Irish Independent

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