The WBA’s board of 21 executives have reviewed a filed protest and issued a vote that calls for an immediate rematch between WBA bantamweight champion Anselmo Moreno (29-1-1, 10KOs) and interim-champion Nehomar Cermeno (19-1, 11KOs). On March 27 in Venezuela, Moreno won a close split-decision over a previously undefeated Cermeno. Judges Uriel Aguilera (114-113) and Nelson Vasquez (115-112) for the champion and judge Levi Martinez saw the interim-champion take it with 115-112.
After the fight, Cermeno and his team issued a protest over the scoring. They gave both sides until May 1 to reach an agreement. Mendoza took offense at the criticisms by Cermeno’s team about the WBA judges.
“Lately the performance of our international officers has been questioned. It is ironic but we spend so much time and effort to reduce such disputes in title fights. I understand very well the impact of the impact on the lives of the boxers when they feel aggrieved by a controversial decision,” said WBA Vice President Gilbert Mendoza. “The WBA knew how difficult it would be to get the right officials for this fight. We decided to use the best officers.”
“The three judges who have a long history worldwide, Nelson Vasquez (PR) with over 120 world title fights and Levi Martinez (USA) with over 50 fights in recent years, are renowned authorities that are used by the biggest commissions in the United States such as Texas, Las Vegas, New York, etc. So much so that the two were the judges in the Clottey vs. Pacquiao fight. And these same two judges saw the fight so close that their scores were split, with Vázquez going for Moreno and Martinez going for Cermeno.”
“As discussed above, everyone has agreed to approve an immediate rematch, because it was a close decision. It was not a bad performance by the judges and both fighters were champions before the fight and they both deserve to define the true champion without the slightest doubt.”