'Ako talaga ang nanalo': Zamboanga hits judging in loss vs Ham

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
'Ako talaga ang nanalo': Zamboanga hits judging in loss vs Ham
Denice Zamboanga (in black) hit the judging in her controversial split decision loss against Seo Hee Ham in ONE: Empower on Friday
ONE Championship

MANILA, Philippines — Denice Zamboanga did not mince words after her controversial split decision loss against Seo Hee Ham in the quarterfinals of the ONE Women's Atomweight World Grand Prix in ONE: Empower on Friday.

In a bout that saw Zamboanga control the pace with her grappling against the striker Ham, the 25-year-old was adamant that she should've gotten the nod of all three judges.

"I'm so speechless right now. For me, I clearly won the fight unanimously," an emotional Zamboanga said after the fight.

"Para sa akin, ako talaga ang nanalo. Hindi ko matanggap and I'm quite disappointed with the judges' decision," she added.

Zamboanga and Ham engaged in a battle that lasted three rounds, which even saw the Filipina fighter bloodied after an accidental headbutt in the third round that momentarily stalled the fight.

But the injury didn't seem to deter Zamboanga after she scored a double leg takedown of the Korean shortly after the fight resumed.

The No. 1 atomweight contender pleaded the Singapore promotion to review the fight and overturn the decision.

"If they can review the fight and decide who really wont that fight, I really believe I won," she said.

And for a majority of the internet, they agree with Zamboanga.

Shortly after the decision was announced, a number of fans reacted to the loss.

Some called it a "roberry" and a "wrong decision".

"Ham did nothing. Wasn't able to show her striking, got controlled the whole fight, taken down twice, and got tossed like a ham in the final round. This was a robbery," wrote one twitter user.

"Ham didn't shock Denise. ONE shocked everyone with the wrong decision," said another.

With the majority thinking that the controversial decision should've gone in her favor, Zamboanga says she takes a little bit of comfort in it.

"Pareho ng iniisip ko at feeling ko [ang] iniisip ng mga taong nanonood," said Zamboanga.

"It gave me a bit of consolation," she added.

Regardless of the controversy, though, Zamboanga hopes ONE gives her the chance to redeem herself with another shot at Ham.

"I hope they talk to me about the decision and also about fighting Ham [again]," said Zamboanga.

And if the rematch happens, Zamboanga says she won't leave it to the judges.

"I should have finished her for it not to end up as a decision," said Zamboanga.

In the main event of ONE: Empower, China's Xiong Jing Nan successfully defended her ONE Strawweight World Championship against Brazil's Michelle Nicolini via unanimous decision.

Also in the card was Fil-Am Jackie Buntan who eked a dominant win over Daniela Lopez in a ONE Strawweight Muay Thai Super Series bout.



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