By Jake Donovan
The World Boxing Organization (WBO) rejected a petition filed on behalf of Juan Carlos Burgos for the sanctioning body to order an immediate rematch with Roman ‘Rocky’ Martinez, it was announced Monday morning.
Burgos was held to a controversial draw against the defending 130 lb. titlist in their January 19 clash at Madison Square Garden’s Theatre in New York City. The bout served as the opening leg of an HBO-televised tripleheader which included Gennady Golovkin’s stoppage win over Gabriel Rosado and Mikey Garcia dethroning featherweight titlist Orlando Salido via technical decision in the evening’s main event.
The majority of viewers – as well as the HBO broadcast team – believed Burgos did more than enough to unseat Martinez, with the margin of victory ranging anywhere from two to 10 points.
An investigation conducted by the WBO suggested no existing evidence of wrongdoing or manipulation of the rules.
A statement released by the WBO informs that the organization “did an independent round by round analytical evaluation by combining the results of the three official judges with those from an independent group of five confidential officials, and the findings stated that Burgos won by 100%: rounds 2, 10 and 12; by 87.5%: rounds 6 and 11; by 75%: round 3; none were won by 62.5%; and, round 4 and 7 were even rounds at 50%-50% (4 judges for Burgos and 4 judges for Martinez).
“The findings stated that Martinez won by 100%: round 5; by 87.5%: round 9; by 75%: round 8; by 62.5%: round 1; and round 4 and 7 were even rounds at 50%-50%, as stated above, making the results unequivocal; and, NOW THEREFORE IT IS RESOLVED by the WBO World Championship Committee that it believes that the decision in the WBO Junior Lightweight Division contested in Madison Square Garden in New York, New York on January 19th, 2013 was not substantially irregular or a clear misapplication of the rules of boxing resulting in a manifest unfairness.
“It therefore resolves that this Committee does not recommend the WBO Executive Committee determine per SECTION 18 of the WBO World Championship Rules that there be a direct return fight.”
Martinez (26-1-2, 16KO) was making the first defense of the belt he won in a vacant title match against Miguel Beltran, Jr. last September. The WBO ruling now clears the way for the all-action Puerto Rican star to next defend against unbeaten Diego Magdaleno. The bout is tentatively scheduled for April 6 as part of a massive fight card in Macau, China.
Meanwhile, Burgos (30-1-1, 20KO) is forced to get back in queue for a hoped-for third crack at a major title. His previous shot at alphabet glory came on the road in Japan, dropping a decision to Hozumi Hasegawa in their Nov. ’10 vacant featherweight title fight.
Jake Donovan is the Boxingscene.com Managing Editor, Records Keeper for Transnational Boxing Ratings Board and a voting member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox