WBA: No evidence ref wrong in Usyk-Dubois fight


The WBA said Thursday that it found no evidence that the referee erred when he ruled a fifth-round punch a low blow during heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk’s ninth-round KO victory over Daniel Dubois in August in Wroclaw, Poland.

The organization denied Dubois’ appeal to overturn the result after its ringside supervisor determined that referee Luis Pabon “made the correct decision regarding the punch which he considered an accidental low blow.”

Usyk dropped to the canvas writhing in pain after England’s Dubois connected with a right hand that appeared to land below the belt. Dubois contended afterward on X, formerly known as Twitter, that it was a legal punch, and that he was robbed of the victory.

Ukraine’s Usyk was given ample time to recover — the maximum allowed is five minutes — and went on to rout Dubois in dominant fashion. The champion floored Dubois in the eighth round and then finished him with a jab the following round.

Dubois was the WBA’s mandatory challenger. He was also challenging for Usyk’s WBO and IBF titles.

Usyk, ESPN’s No. 3 pound-for-pound boxer, is set to fight Tyson Fury for the undisputed heavyweight championship this winter in Saudi Arabia. The bout is tentatively planned for Dec. 23 but won’t have a set date until Fury meets Francis Ngannou on Oct. 28 on ESPN+ PPV.

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