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Pacquiao edges tight fight in Vegas

Boxing has never been a stranger to controversy. There was plenty of dispute and debate about the majority decision that gave Manny Pacquiao victory over Juan Manuel Marquez in the world welterweight title fight in Las Vegas.

Before the fight, Pacquiao had been expected to defeat the ageing Mexican, but many observers found the judges’ decision inexplicable. In their view the Mexican had prevailed in most of the early rounds and should have held an advantage despite the Filipino fighter’s late rally.

The 3 judges tallied the fight 114-114, 115-113, and 116-112 in Pacquiao’s favour. Most fight experts who had followed the rounds were perplexed by the third judge’s scoring.

These two fighters are very evenly matched. In their previous encounters Marquez had been deemed unlucky, drawing one fight and losing the other very narrowly. In the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Marquez looked very comfortable defending against Pacquiao, and landing the occasional effective counter-punch.

In the view of most impartial watchers, the Mexican had built up a substantial lead by the time Pacquiao began to land some punches in round 9. It was assumed that Pacquiao would have to win the 12th round impressively to have a chance of retaining the title. That didn’t happen and Marquez celebrated, only to be denied a shock win by the judges’ decision.

A rematch seems the only just outcome. After the decisions have gone against him three times now, Marquez might be entitled to wonder if he can ever beat the Filipino, however much he outfights him.

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