Richard Rivera against Badou Jack saw a four-minute round in the eighth as Rivera was nearly stopped a minute over the clock.
The pair met at a heavyweight contest on the Antoine Joshua versus Oleksandr Usyk undercard at the King Abdullah Sport City Arena in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Jack – a former world super middleweight champion – was shoved by Rivera before a massive shot deformed ‘Popeye’s knees’.
As the cornermen cried desperately for the round to end, incredibly, the beater never came. Rivera stayed on his feet but was nearly taken down by multiple flurries as he crashed into the corner. In the aftermath, fight fans were just as shocked as the local team.
Taking to social media, one wrote: ‘where is the fucking bell?’, while ‘shocking’, ‘ridiculous’ and ‘shameful’ were among the most used words to describe the ‘incident.
“I believe in the justice system and I guess it failed me that time. But I’m not discouraged, if anyone knows me, I’m Popeye the sailor, I’ll become a world champion. who in my weight class is careful because I am a force to be reckoned with.”
Going into the contest, Rivera was one of the biggest underdogs on the card and very little was known about him prior to fight night. What we learned in Jeddah is that the youngster has a bright future and a lot of potential after he narrowly missed beating a fighter who massively surpasses him in experience.
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