There are often little tidbits, amusing nuggets, neat little anecdotes, which are scattered into the weekly column sent out by WBC chief Jose Sulaiman.
Now, to be sure, the WBC and all the sanctioning bodies are the most convenient whipping posts for boxing media, for reasons both sound an unsound. Yes, the ratings they offer often defy common sense and the explanations they offer for some of the moves they make defy common sense. But sometimes I think some guys just hammer the sanctioning bodies because it satisfies their outrage quotient against a foe that really has no means to get back at them. If Joe Keyboard-Tapper hammers the WBC, what’s going to happen, is the WBC going to cut off access? Rhetorical question…
So, with that in mind, I try not to reflexively bash the WBC, or any sanctioning body, if for no other reason than that by and large they just back some belts, and nobody is forced to align themselves with them, and besides, of all the things wrong with the sport (cough crappy judges cough), I think there are other issues that merit more attention.
The latest column from the 82-year-old Sulaiman is actually written by some family members, as the WBC boss recovers from a heart bypass operation, and complications from the procedure. There are some tidbits in here, to be sure, such as what Sulaiman said upon coming out of anaesthesia post-surgery and from an induced coma. Read on…
November 19, 2013 – Mexico City.
From the office of WBC President Dr. José Sulaimán:
The following is one of the weekly “Hook to the Liver” columns that have been published in El Universal every Sunday for the last five years and written by WBC President Jose Sulaiman.
This column was written by his wife, Martha, and children – Pepe, Lucy, Hector, Fernando, Mauricio, and Claudia – while he recovers from surgery. From November 17, translated from Spanish:
HOOK TO THE LIVER
Technology in Boxing
Even though we are still at the same Intensive Care Unit waiting room, our dad has progressed immensely and for the first time in six weeks, we could ask him what would be his topic if he was to write this weekly column, “Hook to the Liver,” which has been his passion for the past five years. He responded: “Technology in Boxing.” It is important for us to share that his first words after he woke up from surgery on October 2 were, “Floyd Mayweather.” His first words when he woke up from the induced coma he was placed in for 22 days: “Convention.” His life has been, and will always be BOXING .
The World Boxing Council changed the world of boxing and continues to work diligently to make it safer for the boxers, and also to bring justice and clarity in the results of fights. It is precisely here where technology can by of great support.
JUDGING SCORING SYSTEM
The WBC invented and introduced the 10-point must system which has been used for the past 35 years. It has served as a fair solution, but it is now time to implement changes to address the current problematic and evident failure of such system, as 95 percent of the rounds are scored 10-9 regardless of how such round was won – slightly, moderately, clearly, or by absolute and complete dominance and power. The new system, which Jose Sulaiman has been working on for several years, is a complex one, but it gathers the knowledge of many great officials and many years of experience. The idea is to score the rounds by providing a much wider range for officials to score, selecting such score “by concept,” providing a numeric figure through an algorithm bringing officials a possibility of scoring with much more precision. This will not be easy. It will take time, but works are underway to have it available in the future.
Many sports use the review of actions with instant replay to correct human error by officials, or make the right call of fast actions which were not clear to the officials: the NFL, tennis, baseball, and some others have found great success. The WBC uses instant replay in most of its fights to review only extreme actions which can change the outcome of the bout, such as the source of a cut or revision of a major foul. The last five years have brought great results and the challenge is to have most, if not all, jurisdictions accept to use the technological advantages and use the instant replay rule.
OPEN SCORING AFTER THE 4TH AND 8TH ROUND
Boxing is the only sport in which nobody knows the scores until the end of the event. The WBC introduced the announcement of the official scores after the fourth and eighth rounds, having the last four rounds with drama and uncertainty for the end result. In seven years, the results have been fantastic – boxers and corners appreciate knowing how the fight is being scored and can adjust their strategy, fights have been more competitive and with more action, and there has not been one single negative incident.
Boxing, as most things in current life, is run with the tremendous influence of social media. Press reports and fan interaction is more active every day on the different platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and so on. Fights are promoted differently: fighters make their own news by direct contact with fans, and boxing has reached places that, without social media, would be impossible to accomplish. We invite you to join the WBC Facebook page, to follow the WBC twitter accounts: @wbcboxing, @josesulaiman, @wbcmoro, @wbccares, and others.
We are thrilled to see how our father is getting better. This has been a long journey and there is still a long way to go, but with the support and care that we have been receiving from so many people, and the prayers which have given us so much strength and faith, we now can look ahead and enjoy this beautiful life.
Martha Sulaiman and kids….