Tim Tszyu in classy post-fight act amid storm over 'unfair' Sebastian Fundora move

Tszyu suffered the first defeat of his career after blood streamed out of a cut on his head.

Legendary former boxing commentator Jim Lampley has suggested Tim Tszyu was robbed in his title fight against Sebastian Fundora after copping a fight-defining elbow from the American in the second round. Tszyu dominated the first two rounds but was unable to stem the flow of blood from the second round elbow and ultimately went down in a split decision loss to Fundora in their super-welterweight unification world title fight in Las Vegas.

The referee and many viewers thought it was an accidental elbow from Fundora that Tszyu walked into after stepping on his towering opponent's foot when he went to lunge forward. The top of the Aussie's head made contact with the point of the American's elbow, causing blood to flow incessantly from the wound.

The left image shows the contentious elbow from Sebastian Fundora on Tim Tszyu in their boxing title fight.
Tim Tszyu's fight went pear-shaped after he copped an elbow from Sebastian Fundora in the second round of their boxing world title fight. Pic: Main Event

Tszyu admitted after the fight that he couldn't see properly in the ring because of the constant flow of blood in his eyes, with the Aussie's corner criticised for not pushing to stop the fight in a 'no contest' or being able to stem the flow of blood from the cut. Fight experts in the United States suggested that Tszyu's team were not using the right ointment on the wound to stop the bleeding.

But former boxing caller Lampley - who was HBO’s blow-by-blow commentator for three decades - said his beef was with referee Harvey Dock for failing to penalise Fundora. Analysing replays of the contentious incident in question, Lampley said the movement from the American that caused the contact with Tszyu's head was "not a boxing move".

Boxing world divided over Sebastian Fundora elbow

“That’s not fair. Life is not fair. That was unfair competition because one guy fouled the other with an elbow on the top of the head and cut him open in such a way that the blood flow was not going to be stopped,” Lampley said after the bout. “If the outcome is not altered by the cut, I don’t think Fundora is ever in the position to win the rounds the way he did because Tszyu would have tactical command and mastery. He’s a better boxer...

“It was right there on top of the skull where all the blood flow comes... Tim got hit by an elbow on top of the head. That is not a boxing move.” Many viewers agreed with Lampley's view and suggested Fundora should have at least been docked a point for the elbow. Others argued it was accidental and the referee made the right call not to penalise Fundora, even if most thought the fight should have been stopped before round three as blood streamed down Tszyu's face.

Tim Tszyu's classy praise for Sebastian Fundora after fight

A devastated Tszyu was all class after the fight as he refused to make excuses for the loss and praised Fundora for the victory. “I told you I’m an old throwback fighter,” Tszyu said. “I couldn’t see, but all credit belongs to the man who won tonight...

“The momentum was rolling, I was swinging hard in the first two rounds and then boom, you’re blinded completely. This is boxing, this is part of the sport. These things happens. Congratulations to Fundora, he’s the new king of the 154 (pound division).”

Pictured right to left is Tim Tszyu and boxing rival Sebastian Fundora.
Tim Tszyu was classy in his praise for Sebastian Fundora after their super-welterweight unification world title fight in Las Vegas. Pic: AAP/Main Event

The Aussie's classy post-fight moments couldn't disguise the fact that defeat in his US debut was a devastating blow to Tszyu's boxing aspirations. The Aussie could have earned a guaranteed $15 million in a fight with either pound-for-pound king Terence Crawford or Errol Spence Jr. if he had secured the two belts in America. And the sight of Spence entering the ring afterwards to call out Fundora merely added insult to injury.


Tszyu will now most likely have to chase the rematch clause with Fundora that was written into the fight contract. However, the WBO has ordered Fundora to face Crawford, which would most likely attract even bigger money than a bout with Fundora and leaves Tszyu in an even trickier predicament.

While Crawford suggested after the fight that Tszyu would need to work his way back up to a fight with him, the Aussie was widely praised his courageous bout in the face of so much adversity. Tszyu said whoever his next opponent turns out to be, he promised to take the fight to them.

“We’ll bounce back. The arena showed up. I showed up still. No matter what, I’ll always bring the fight," a defiant Tszyu said afterwards. “I was given one week, no excuses. I’ll fight whoever, whenever. Even Errol Spence is here, I’ll fight him. Even Terence Crawford. You want a good scrap? You know who to call.”

with agencies