Promoter Dennis Hobson has blamed errant scoring for Stuart Hall’s IBF bantamweight title loss to Paul Butler.
Two judges scored the bout 115-113 for each fighter, but Berit Andreasen’s card of 117-111 in Butler’s favour ensured he walked away with a first world title, leaving Hall empty-handed in front of a home crowd.
Despite a majority of the boxing media scoring a close bout to Butler, Hobson believes poor judging cost Hall his title.
“It was a terrific bout, only let down by the scoring. I don't know what the third judge was watching, but her scoring has cost Stuart his title,” Hobson said.
Many observers scored the bout to the challenger by one round, which made Andreasen’s card look controversially wide, but many rounds were closely fought and could have gone either way.
Although he started slowly and lost the first four stanzas across most cards, Hall used his size advantage to gain a foothold as the bout wore on and pinned Butler on the ropes several times. It is here where objective scoring and personal preference comes into play.
Indeed the Ellesmere Port-boxer found himself defending with his back on the ropes, but used his extensive defensive skills to slip, slide and evade most of the shots Hall threw his way. While it looked as if the champion was on top – he was certainly turning into the aggressor – not many punches landed.
Hall echoed the thoughts of his promoter: “It’s a really disappointing way to lose my title.
“I’ve watched it back and thought I had it, and I've had loads of messages saying the same. The challenger has to come and take the title and I thought I’d done enough.”
Having been thrust in at world level unexpectedly six months ago, the Darlington-based fighter came in as a betting underdog but pushed Butler all the way.
His next move is not yet certain, but the 34-year-old said: “I’ll be back stronger. I’m still learning, whatever the decision, and learned loads from that fight. I’ll go on holiday and have a bit of a rest then I’ll be back stronger.”
Hobson wouldn’t be drawn on Hall’s next move, but said it was a great occasion for a city deprived of big-time boxing: “Stuart is a young 34-year-old. He’s a warrior and is always in fantastic fights, and we’ll look to move him back up to the top as soon as possible.
“It was another great night of boxing in Newcastle,” he finished.
“I just want to thank all the fans and media for coming last night, and for making it such a special occasion.”
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