Nyika loses contentious quarter-final
Kiwi heavyweight David Nyika is angered by a contentious loss to the Olympic Champion at the boxing world championships.
30 August 2017
David Nyika's goal of becoming a boxing world champion has been thwarted by judging he's described as a "sick practical joke".
Kiwi heavyweight Nyika lost his world championships quarter-final in Hamburg by a majority points decision to Russian Olympic champion Evgeny Tishchenko.
The 4-1 loss was met with exasperation by Nyika, 22, whose movement and speed impressed.
He finished the fight strongly and drew praise from commentators.
However, only a judge from Algeria awarded the win to Nyika, 29-28, meaning the Kiwi won two of three rounds in his eyes.
Three judges made it 29-28 to Tishchenko, while an Irish judge gave all three rounds to the defending champion.
Nyika vented his feelings in an emotional social media post.
"Boxing, you cruel beast. Today I put on a clinic against reigning Olympic and World Champion," he said.
"I feel like I'm the punch line of some sick practical joke in this sport. Nevertheless I'm still here, and remain loyal to my craft."
The decision attracted condemnation from boxing pundits on social media, who suggested it was time for the Hamilton-based Nyika to switch to the professional ranks.
He has previously committed to remain an amateur until at least next year's Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast.
He won a Games gold medallist at Glasgow in 2014, in the light heavyweight class.
A contentious win isn't new for tall southpaw Tishchenko.
There were angry crowd reactions when he was awarded a unanimous win in the heavyweight gold medal fight at last year's Rio Olympics.
Nyika opened the tournament with a unanimous points win over German Igor Teziev.
He was the lone Kiwi competing at the AIBA event and hoped to become the second male boxer from his country to claim a world championships medal.
The first was David Tua, who took bronze in 1991.
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