By Chris Robinson
This past Saturday night, a shameful act went down in Corpus Christi, Texas.
Fighting on Showtime’s airwaves, former champion Gabriel Campillo, who was dropped twice in the first round, appeared to clearly outbox and outclass IBF light heavyweight champion Tavoris Cloud for the remaining eleven fames afterwards. And while a unanimous decision in the Spaniard’s favor was the only righteous verdict, a split-decision was instead handed to Cloud.
I had contacted Campillo’s advisor and promoter Sampson Lewkowicz recently to extend some sort of condolence for the misfortune that had fallen upon his fighter but he didn’t quite know how to accept it.
“If you really feel bad for me and Campillo, you should send an email to the commissioner and email to the IBF, giving your thoughts,” said the Uruguayan-born Lewkowicz. “You know why? Because what happened [last weekend] was horrible. And we need to make it stop. The voice of the people, you, can make this happen.”
Making matters worse, one week prior to the Cloud-Campillo bout, Lewkowicz saw near tragedy strike another one of his fighters as 22-year old Filipino Johnriel Casimero and his team was bombarded by a rowdy Argentinean crowd after hometown favorite Luis Lazarte was stopped in the tenth round. The near riot that ensued was a horrible backdrop to Casimero’s victory that netted him the interim IBF light flyweight title.
Those two incidents seemed to make Lewkowicz do some soul-searching as to whether working in the field of boxing was still in his best interest.
“I felt so bad for Campillo, that I thought even to retire,” Lewkowicz revealed. “Because it was horrible, and the violence towards my other champion, Casimero, in Argentina, and seven days later to have this kind of disgrace; I’m in the wrong business.”
Continuing further, you can tell that disgust isn’t the only emotion that a befuddled Lewkowicz is feeling at the moment.
“I tell you, I was very successful at whatever I did but this brought me down,” stated Lewkowicz. “Because I saw this kid, to get up twice from the floor and to win every round between maybe one or two, and somebody giving a 116-110 [scorecard]; that is totally wrong. It’s something that is very hard for me to swallow.”
Asked if he felt Campillo, who was also blatantly jipped of a rightfully-earned decision in January of 2010 when he saw the judges award a bloodied Beibut Shumenov an outrageous split-decision at the Hard Rock in Las Vegas, would consider retiring, he scoffed at such a notion.
“I believe that he’ll be another Sergio Martinez,” said Lewkowicz, bringing up the world’s lineal middleweight champion who also serves as a stable mate and friend to Campillo. “It’s the same thing that happened with Sergio. You need to get robbed to get the chance to be known at the same time.”
Finishing up on his disappointment, Lewkowicz did note that he felt Saturday night’s slipup was merely a case of two judges showing their deficiencies as opposed to a pure crooked act.
“I don’t believe it’s corruption. I believe it’s inept of the judges," said Lewkowicz. "You cannot accuse anybody of corruption. Because I don’t believe in corruption. I don’t believe it’s [Cloud’s promoter] Don King. I believe that all of the judges should be banned from boxing. I cannot say it’s corruption, I can say it’s inept.”
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