Just days before the start of the Rio Olympics 2016, boxing has been hit with allegations of widespread corruption. Some of the claims in the report published by The Guardian goes into great detail about rigging of matches, blatant bias from the referees and misuse of power by certain officials, using their clout to tinker with the draws. It was also revealed that points were scored in a manner that would ensure that certain players win.
The International Boxing Association (AIBA), which wase quizzed about these claims, chose to be tight-lipped. The report quoted an official from the panel, Terry Walsh, saying, “These are the types of rumours we certainly don’t want with the Olympics coming up. With that many contests going on there is bound to be one that becomes controversial, the last thing you want to know is something like this throwing it into doubt.”
There were officials who decided to lodge a complaint in the hope that justice prevailed in the sport. The report also documented Irish judge Seamus Kelly's struggle. He went to state that he was being marginalised by the AIBA soon after he had informed them about a bout being fixed right in front of him. Kelly claimed that he was asked to cheat by other officials in the Arab Games in Doha and also spoke about the tough times he had to endure after alerting AIBA president CK Wu. Kelly stated, “It was mental abuse. I wasn’t sleeping at all because of the way they made me feel. It put an X against my name. They were pushing me away.”
Indian boxing fans had cried out about injustice in the ring two years ago during the Asian Games in Incheon. L Sarita Devi was handed a one-year ban for refusing to accept a bronze medal on the podium after losing her semi-final encounter against Park Ji-Na. The ones who had watched the bout claimed that the Manipuri boxer had clearly done enough to win the match. Korea have been in the line of fire previously too. In the 1988 Olympic games in Seoul, home favourite Park Si-Hun was adjudged the winner against American Roy Jones Jr in a bout that was was described as a "scandal".
Kelly claimed that that ramifications keep the witnesses at bay. He said, “People are afraid to speak out because if they are judges they will be sidelined and won’t get to go to the Olympics or other championships. If they are officials, they fear their country’s boxers will be targeted.”