Boxer Yakita Aska and Coach John Ryan Unhappy Following Pan Am Games Exit

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Coach, John Ryan
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By Neto Baptiste

National boxer Yakita Aska and coach John Ryan were not pleased with the fighter’s exit from the Men’s 92kg quarterfinal round contest against Canada’s Bryan Colwell in the ongoing Pan American Games in Santiago, Chile, on Monday.

Aska was eliminated after the officials stopped the fight just one minute and 40 second in when Colwell was cut on the head by a punch from the Antiguan and could not continue to fight.

To their surprise however, the Canadian was awarded the match based on the fact that he was leading on the judges score card at the time the match was stopped.

Aska said it was an unfair decision but was happy to have made it to the quarterfinals of his first major tournament in almost a year.

“I hit him a punch and burst his face and I think they ruled it’s a [head injury] and they gave him the fight. So, I don’t know what happened but is when you come from a small island [in comparison] to a big country, but no one would have guessed that five months ago I was on the corner selling cane and roasting corn and look where I am now so I feel good,” he said. 

Ryan, who coaches both Aska and Alston Ryan who made a first round exit from the games over the weekend, echoed the boxer’s sentiments that it should have been an obvious victory for Antigua and Barbuda.

“They have the rule now that you cannot protest so they do as they like. It is set up for the big countries and if you notice, no Caribbean island win anything; that’s how they set it up and it’s … unfair. It’s plain for anybody to see. Yakita burst his face with a punch and they stopped the fight so it’s supposed to be a walkover,” he said.

Three of the five judges had the Canadian leading the fight 10-9 with the other two scoring Aska in the lead at 10-9 each. 

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