Boxing

Boxing ref gets punched in face at Commonwealth Games – and doesn’t even flinch

A referee briefly showcased her impressive ability to take a punch as she was hit in the face by a super-heavyweight boxer at the Commonwealth Games and barely flinched.

While in professional boxing the top two divisions are cruiserweight and then heavyweight, amateur boxing names them heavyweight and super-heavyweight respectively. There were a lot of powerful punches exchanged between the two fighters, but referee Paula Falorni was not supposed to be the recipiant of one of them.

Falorni was officiating the fight between Cameroon boxer Maxime Yegnong Njiego and India’s Sagar Ahlawat when she accidentally got involved in the action. Yegnong Njiego swung with a huge left hook but erred and duly missed his opponent.

READ MORE: Australian boxer's horror cut in Commonwealth Games clash ends fight early

His momentum saw him thump the referee in the face rather than Ahlawat. Rather remarkably, the referee took it incredibly well as she hardly even blinked before continuing to deal with the fight.

Falorni did not go down and instead stood there gesturing to Njieyo about his reckless punch, and he instantly apologised for his mistake by bowing to her. She appeared to accept his apology and the fight resumed.

Ultimately, Yegnong Njieyo couldn't land as many tough shots on his actual opponent, and went on to lose fairly comfortably. Ahlawat is making his debut at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham and the 20-year-old claimed a 5-0 win via decision.


Were you impressed by the referee's ability to take a punch? Let us know in the comments section.

After the contest, Ahlawat shared a round-up to his Instagram account although it was clear it was written by a social media team or a stand-in while the athlete is competing. It read: “SAGAR THROUGH TO QUARTERS!

“Sagar Ahlawat in full beast mode as he uses his jabs, crosses and hooks to perfection against Cameron's Maxime Yegnong in the men's 92kg+ bout. Unanimous Decision victory!

“More power to you going ahead, Sagar!”

The Indian will face Keddy Agnes of the Seychelles in the quarter-finals.

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