Video Replay Considered For Fury vs. Usyk

VAR, otherwise known as video assistant referee, could introduced in the Tyson Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk Undisputed Heavyweight fight on May 18.

That is according to Spencer Oliver. VAR has divided fans since its introduction in sports such as soccer. There has been a debate over whether its usefulness disrupts the flow of the game even if the ‘correct’ decisions are made. Boxing could benefit from detecting low blows or legitimate knockdowns. The drawback is that it could cause delays once a decision is being considered, giving fighters more time to recover. Mauricio Sulaiman, the WBC President, has said video technology must be introduced. Oliver expects the Fury-Usyk fight to use it. 

“I believe that they want to implement that in the Tyson Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk fight. They’re talking about video replays etc., to help them come to the correct decision, like VAR. I think that we sometimes see illegal blows going, it causes cuts and what not and then the guy will win the fight,” Oliver said

Usyk’s last fight against Daniel Dubois showed the possible benefits of VAR. The Unified Heavyweight Champion hit the canvas after a body shot by Dubois in round five. The referee claimed it was a low blow, which divided the boxing community. This allowed Usyk five minutes to recover as he knocked out Dubois in round nine. Despite Frank Warren appealing the decision to the WBA, the result stood. 

Other controversial boxing results included Katie Taylor vs Chantelle Cameron 2 after the champion was denied a clear knockdown in the first round, as Taylor hit the canvas. Taylor was also called out for excessive headbutting, which went unpunished by the referee.

Those decisions ultimately cost Cameron her belts. Teofimo Lopez also secured a controversial split decision win over Sandor Martin. The timing to assemble the scorecards was lengthy, as the decision divided many. But VAR could prevent these controversies. 

“That’s a great example [Usyk-Dubois]. He wouldn’t have got the five minute break on the floor in between the rounds and Dubois lost his momentum then. Dubois was fired up, he was ready to go but that may have changed the fight. “The referee has allowed the five-minute break, in the five-minute break then say, ‘Woah, that wasn’t a low-blow, get him on with it.’ They overrule it basically,” Oliver added 

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