While this is a famous saying in a Shakespearean play (which of course was fictional), it may in fact be a sad reality after questionable events in a May 7th fight card promoted by Sauerland Boxing Promotions, in Copenhagen Denmark.
As most of the boxing world is aware, Wilfried Sauerland recently caused quite a spectacle while complaining about the officials assigned in the Andre Ward versus Arthur Abraham bout on May 14th in California, even going as far as threatening to pull Abraham from the fight. Apparently, Mr. Sauerland doesn’t practice what he preaches. When his company reached out to Sal Musumeci of Final Forum looking to use his fighter, World-ranked Heavyweight Contender Derric Rossy, as a last minute replacement to fight Kubrat Pulev, Musumeci questioned Sauerland about the officials that would be used. It is no secret that when American fighters travel to Europe to take on the locals, the odds are stacked against them and it is more often than not that they are not given a fair shake. In response to Musumeci’s concern, Hagen Dohring, matchmaker of Sauerland's team, stated that the Commission and officials are assigned by Queen Margrethe herself and Denmark is a neutral country and that all fighters would be treated fairly. Sadly, the attached link from the Rossy-Pulev bout will shed a different light on that.
In what was a very active and even bout for the first 4 and a half rounds, the referee put a questionable halt to the bout with no explanation. Upon further review, after examining the YouTube link carefully (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nnlfUG2vCYw), the world can witness a very peculiar chain of events: with around 1 minute left in round 5 (8:35 on the YouTube reel), it appears that a ringside judge by the name of Jan Christensen (who for some reason was still dressed as a referee from an earlier bout), can be seen raising his hand, queuing the actual referee, Soren Saugman, to stop the bout as Rossy was firing back with counter shots. Being a prominent promoter in Denmark and the rest of Europe, it seems as though Wilfried has more insight and influence with officials in Europe than he would in a fair, unbiased United States Commission, which is probably why he was so concerned about the officials in the Ward-Abraham fight.
“I mean, I thought he was stopping the action for a standing 8-count, which I didn’t think I needed but when you go overseas I guess you have to expect it,” said a still agitated Rossy. “Once I realized he stopped the fight I couldn’t believe it. I trained my a** off up until this fight and I was firing back with every punch he threw at me. The kid was obviously gassed and I was conditioned to go 15 rounds if I needed to. The referee couldn’t even look me in the face when I was asking him what he was stopping it for. It’s really not fair that fighters can work so hard and put their all into this game only to get screwed every time they leave the U.S.”
When Musumeci brought the early stoppage to the attention of Michael Seemann Hansen, President of Danish Professional Boxing Federation, he promised that he would look into the matter and correct any wrong doing. It’s been over 2 weeks and all of Team Rossy’s calls have been ignored.
Rossy’s promoter, Sal Musumeci, reiterated what his fighter was saying. “When the fight was stopped I was livid. It’s such an injustice because I saw in Pulev’s face that he was gassed and had nothing left at the end of that round (apparently the judge saw that as well). I thought the stoppage was questionable from just the way the fight was going, but going back and watching the footage and seeing the judge signal the ref to stop it, it’s an absolute travesty. You hear the horror stories about U.S. fighters going to Europe and getting jerked around, but until you actually fall victim to it you can’t really understand the frustration and anger that builds up. We will not stop fighting and seeking justice until the Commission does the right thing and changes the outcome to a No-Contest and the officials involved are made accountable for their unjust actions.”
Seems as though something is in fact rotten in Denmark.