NEW DELHI: Boxing’s global governing body – AIBA – launched a probe on Thursday into Indian boxer Amit Panghal‘s claim that his bout against Shakhobidin Zoirov in the 52kg final of the Asian Boxing Championships in Dubai was “rigged”.
The AIBA ordered its Refereeing and Judging (R&J) Committee to conduct an “immediate investigation into the work of all relevant appointed officials (at the tournament) and report their findings to the AIBA Disciplinary Committee as soon as possible, to determine whether there is a case to answer or not”. It added, “If so, the Disciplinary Committee will empower an immediate independent expert review to determine whether any incorrect decisions were taken due to lack of competence, manipulation or corruption.”

In an exclusive interview to TOI upon his return from Dubai on Tuesday, Panghal had alleged manipulation in scoring during his fight against Zoirov. He had further alleged that the judges officiating the bout wanted Zoirov to win because of the “influence” wielded by powerful boxing federations from the Central Asian regions of Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
Tokyo Olympics-bound Panghal had lost narrowly (2-3) to the Uzbek pugilist in the flyweight category, despite performing exceedingly well in second and third rounds. The controversial decision was challenged by the Indian team management but the jury commission refused to review the bout.
Reacting to claims, the AIBA informed that it’s aware of potential issues and allegations concerning the judging of certain bouts at the Asian championships in Dubai and has taken such allegations “very seriously”.