By John F. McKenna (McJack)
Former WBA/IBF light welterweight champion Amir Khan (26-2, 18 KO’s) is alleging that an unidentified man was seen speaking to WBA supervisor Michael Walsh in his losing fight to new WBA/IBF light welterweight champion Lamont Peterson (30-1-1, 15 KO’s). Khan also claims that the mystery man was handling papers that belonged to the judges while the fight was in progress.
In addition Khan states that the same mystery man was seen celebrating in Peterson’s corner after he was declared the winner. Video has emerged showing the unidentified man speaking with Walsh, handling slips of paper and then celebrating in Peterson’s corner.
Khan was quoted by Sky Sports saying:
“That’s right he was (in Peterson’s corner). You only see that on the video. At the fight I didn’t realize.
“But after watching it on tape, you see him around the same corner as Lamont Peterson’s team, cheering with them and celebrating.
“That’s the reason I want to know who this person was and why he was sat with the judges? Why was he passing papers around? Why was he handling things?
“The rule is: whenever the judges are working no one is allowed to touch the judges scorecards or papers.”
Khan went on to say that the video shows the mystery man sitting next to Walsh and instead of supervising the fight both men had their heads down. The scoring of the fight was controversial even before the decision was rendered with referee Joe Cooper deducting two points from Khan for pushing Peterson off. Khan alleges that Cooper allowed Peterson to come in with is head down while at the same time deducting points from him for pushing off.
Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer, who handles Khan has alleged that Khan was the victim of what he referred to as “home cooking” in the bout. Schaefer strongly insinuates that Peterson won the fight because of preferential treatment in his hometown of Washington, D.C.
Even with the two point deduction from Khan, Peterson’s victory was very close. There was also controversy over the scorecards which Schaefer alleges disappeared only to reappear in pristine condition after being tampered with.
Golden Boy filed an appeal with the IBF and the WBA over the controversy surrounding the fight. The appeal will be heard on January 18. It is unlikely that the decision will be overturned but at the very least Golden Boy is hopeful that the IBF and WBA will mandate Peterson to give Khan a rematch.