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Petrova throws punches at judges 

New Delhi, November 19

Controversy marred Sonia Chahal’s win on Monday after a Bulgarian coach lost his accreditation for questioning the result. Sonia advanced to the quarterfinals of the AIBA Women’s Boxing World Championships after she was declared the winner on points over Bulgaria’s Stanimira Petrova.

Petrova and her coach Petar Lesov were clearly unhappy with their 2-3 loss. Petrova was seen with a big wry smile when the verdict was announced. Lesov lost his cool on a water bottle which he threw by the side of the ring in disgust. He was also gesturing to the home crowd, suggesting the decision was wrong. Petrova called it corruption. “I will only tell you one thing that it is corruption by the judges. It is not a fair result,” the Bulgarian told the media before stomping out.

AIBA has withdrawn Lesov’s accreditation which will bar him from sitting ringside during the bouts. In a statement AIBA added that the incident has been forwarded to the Disciplinary Committee for further review. 

‘Unacceptable behaviour’

“The International Boxing Association (AIBA) has decided to remove the accreditation, and therefore the right to be in the corner, of the coach from the Bulgarian delegation, Petar Yosifov Lesov, due to his unacceptable behaviour after the decision of the Bout Number 177, Session 9, Ring B, involving Stanimira Petrova (BUL) and Sonia (IND),” the statement said. “The International Boxing Association does not tolerate, in any circumstances, such behaviour against the AIBA values and AIBA Code of Conduct, especially, from a coach. The incident will be forwarded to the Disciplinary Committee for  review,” it further read.

Sonia, meanwhile, agreed that Petrova, a 2014 World Champion in the 54kg weight class, gave her a tough fight. “She had a better second round than me and so my coaches told me to be more aggressive in the third round, which I did. I don’t think that judges got it wrong,” Sonia said.

Even the England team’s world class programme coach Dave Alloway wasn’t entirely convinced with the 5-0 margin of Pinki Rani Jangra’s win over Ebonie Alice Jones in the 51kg weight division. “Personally I don’t think it was a 5-0 decision. I think the judges perhaps didn’t award our boxer points where they should have, but it is subjective, you really don’t know how the judges are seeing the bout. So it’s OK,” Alloway said.

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