OLYMPIC BOXING:Questions have to be asked after Michael Conlan loses in Rio

Ireland's Michael Conlan can't believe it after Russia's Vladimir Nikitin is awarded the victory
Ireland's Michael Conlan can't believe it after Russia's Vladimir Nikitin is awarded the victory

Michael Conlan swore and gave the judges at ringside a piece of his mind after he was robbed of his Olympic dream in Rio on Tuesday - and rightly so.

As Conlan’s attempt to win a gold medal at the Games before turning professional was cruelly taken away from him by three officials sitting ringside as they gave the result to a totally bemused and bewildered Vladimir Nikitin of Russia.

But this is not the first time that amateur boxing has come under the spotlight for some strange results and I am sure it will not be the last.

Amateur boxing and it’s perverted decisions have soured many people thoughts towards it and many have turned their back on a sport they loved because of incidents like this.

Of course judges can have an off day - we all do - but anyone who watched the fight yesterday would have given Conlan the victory - but it was not to be.

The heartbreaking thing for Conlan was that he has put in years of training, dieting and putting his body through the mixer to become the boxer he has become.

Hours and hours of pad-work, sparring and pushing himself to the limit to claim Olympic gold were taken away from him by faceless men in tight fitting white shirts at ringside.

The whole episode is an embarrassment to the sport but they will not care.

This was just another day at the office for these officials and they will judge again.

And Conlan - who was clearly angry straight after the fight - could not believe what had happened to him.

“When I went back to the corner after the first round I wasn’t even breathing heavy.

“My corner said: ‘You’ve done fantastic. You’ll win this easy.

“And the Russian afterwards, he didn’t believe he won. I didn’t believe he won. The referee didn’t believe he won.

“I couldn’t think his corner believed he won. Then he reacted as if he’d won a gold medal.

“I was here for gold. It didn’t happen. I’ll never box in this competition again.

“If people watch this Olympic Games and they see some of the decisions … I think boxing is dead. It’s about whoever pays the most money. Whoever has the biggest influence wins.”

But the International Boxing Association came fighting back and an official said: “Michael is a current world champion and he came here with high expectations. His disappointment is massive, we can all understand that. It’s his personal judgment.

“AIBA is striving for a fair, level-playing field. The idea is not to benefit one country towards another.

“These statements are found less but he’s free to have his opinion.”

Opinion? Many people from around the world have expressed their ‘opinion’ on the fight and most of them agree that Conlan won the contest.

But we will shall leave the final ‘opinion’ to former pound for pound king Sergio Martinez who said on Twitter: “AIBA and corruption in the same sentence its all that world need to read #cheats.”