Burns vs Beltran Post Fight Analysis – Bad Judging Strikes Again
By Peter Wells
On a night that was set for Burns to shine and light up the night in Scotland, instead like a faulty light bulb he flickered all night, never quite shining but just about managing not to cut out. Raymundo Beltran didn’t manage to defuse the light, but all night he kept it dimmed right down. Sadly Beltran’s bad luck mojo struck again, as Burns retained his WBO Lightweight title via a split draw.
Beltran looked the perfect opponent for Burns, a man who has shown slick skills on the back foot and one who also possesses a long reach and quality jab. However from the 2nd round onwards Burns struggled to contain the Mexican jumping-jack, spending much of the contest with his back firmly against the ropes.
An 8th round knockdown shook the arena who like most experts were envisioning a dominant Burns performance that would culminate in a late stoppage or clear decision win. That wasn’t to be as Beltran became the second opponent on the trot to expose Burns’ flaws.
In the opener Burns looked comfortable, bouncing on his toes and making Beltran miss while snapping the Mexican with solid jabs and plenty of right crosses. Into the 2nd and the gap was closed considerably, Burns’ cool jab became less apparent and the sharp right hand converted to wild and inaccurate lunges.
Beltran remained calm while Burns seemed to be losing all composure. A dislocated jaw in the 2nd round didn’t help matters, but instead of reverting to a more cautious approach, Burns became even more ragged.
In rounds 3 and 4 Beltran swarmed all over Burns, blasting away to the body and seeming to be unable to miss with the left hook. Round 5 was close, Burns looked to box at times but Beltran picked his moments well when Burns lay against the ropes.
Round 6 was another close round that could have swung either way, Burns’ boxing seemed to just nick it, but in round 7 he was yet again caught too many times slouching against the ropes.
In the 8th round a huge left hook sent Burns to the canvas, but Burns wasn’t in serious trouble. Still Beltran looked to land another big shot to end the contest but didn’t quite go for broke, seemingly conserving energy for the later rounds.
In the 9th Burns continued to hold on at almost every opportunity, referee Phil Edwards refused to even offer Ricky a warning, when almost all viewers believed Burns was lucky to escape a point deduction. His negativity may have cost him the 9th round and it definitely cost him the 10th, as Beltran outworked the Scot the entire stanza
To Burns’ credit he ended the contest like a champion, winning the final two rounds. Beltran who has been on the end of contentious decisions in the past should have known better than to sacrifice the final 2 stanzas, it proved very costly.
One scorecard rightly read 115-113 Beltran but the others of 115-112 Burns and 114-114 cost Beltran a deserved career defining victory.
Oddly though the decision did define Beltran’s career. A man who has been cursed with the tag of “opponent” too many times, last night was Beltran’s night but the sport that he has devoted so much to yet again crashed his party.
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