by Nick Giongco
KUALA LUMPUR — American Kenny Bayless, acknowledged as the world’s top referee, will work the world welterweight title fight between champion Lucas Matthysse and Manny Pacquiao this Sunday at the Axiata Arena.
Sean Gibbons, the hardworking US boxing man, confirmed the selection of Bayless on Tuesday.
Glenn Feldman of the US, Jean Robert Laine of France and Staley Christodoulou of South Africa are the three judges, added Gibbons, who also handles the affairs of world super-flyweight titlist Jerwin Ancajas.
The choice of Bayless as referee was warmly welcomed by Team Pacquiao, whose Australian conditioning coach Justin Fortune, gave the thumbs up sign.
“He won’t allow the pushing, shoving and bruising,” said Fortune, who was exasperated when Pacquiao fought Jeff Horn last year in Brisbane and third man Mark Nelson didn’t act on the Australians roughhousing tactics.
While Matthysse is not known to be a dirty fighter, the Argentine might resort to using the strategy used by Horn in an effort to mess up the Filipino’s gameplan.
But Fortune believes Bayless will have none of it.