Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Embattled boxing judge taking break from sport

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LAS VEGAS -- A veteran Nevada boxing judge who drew widespread criticism after scoring a weekend title fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Saul "Canelo" Alvarez a draw is giving up her ringside job, at least temporarily.

"I'm taking time away," Cynthia C.J. Ross told The Associated Press on Wednesday in a brief telephone interview from her home outside Las Vegas.

The 64-year-old Ross said she won't judge any fights "in the immediate future," and hadn't made a decision whether to quit.

Ross scored the world 152-pound title fight a 114-114 draw on Saturday night, but Mayweather won a majority decision after two other judges scored Mayweather the clear winner. Those scorecards had the fight 116-112 and 117-111 for Mayweather, who remained an undefeated 45-0.

Alvarez fell to 42-1-1 before a big crowd at the MGM Grand Garden Arena and a large pay-per-view audience.

Nevada boxing regulators generally backed Ross, although Nevada Athletic Commission Chairman Bill Brady told reporters the panel could have looked more closely at her selection for the Mayweather fight. Brady promised changes to protect fighters, fans and bettors. He didn't immediately respond Wednesday to messages.

State Athletic Commission Executive Director Keith Kizer said Wednesday he respected Ross' decision to take time off and appreciated her more than 20 years of service to boxing.

Ross, a retired casino surveillance official and mechanical designer, said she has been scoring fights for 22 years and estimated that she had judged more than 30 previous championship bouts.

She defended her scoring of the 12-round Mayweather-Alvarez fight.

"I had six rounds for each fighter," she said. "Every round was close. I no idea of the controversy until the next day."

Ross said she thought second-guessing on social media has changed boxing.

"Controversy happens in a lot of fights. With the help of social media, people expressing opinions, it brings things to a different light," she said. "I'm taking the brunt of it."

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition September 19, 2013 D6

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