Gennady Golovkin denied win over Canelo Alvarez as controversial draw causes outrage
Gennady Golovkin and Saul "Canelo" Alvarez fought to a draw in the hotly-anticipated world middleweight title showdown in Las Vegas.
Golovkin was bidding to defend his WBC, WBA and IBF belts against Alvarez in the bout at the T-Mobile Arena.
But the match was controversially deemed too close to call, with the judges declaring a split draw at the end of 12 rounds despite Golovkin appearing to be the dominant force throughout the match.
The scores declared by the judges were: 118-110 (Alvarez), 115-113 (Golovkin) and 114-114.
Golovkin wants a rematch after being denied a 38th straight win of his unbeaten career.
"Look at my belts. I'm still champion. I pressured every round. Of course I want a rematch. I want a true fight," he said. "I won seven or eight rounds, easily!"
Boxing icons Manny Pacquiao and Lennox Lewis agreed with his assessment, both tweeting their disgust at the decision with Lewis insinuating that it was a home decision in favour of Mexico's Alvarez that he should have lost with stats showing he was outpunched by the hard-hitting Kazakh.
The controversial scorecard of judge Adalaide Byrd, who favoured Alvarez 118-110, sparked outrage on social media.
Dozens of Twitter users declared the victory belonged to Golovkin and expressed their fury at the result.
Bryd gave Golovkin just two rounds of the fight - the fourth and seventh - with the other 10 going to Alvarez.
Golovkin mostly occupied the centre of the ring, while Alvarez was more comfortable near the ropes, content for the most part to counterpunch.
California-based Golovkin, widely known by his nickname 'Triple G', had an edge in jabs, but neither fighter could deliver a knockout.
"I want big drama show. It’s not my fault," said Golovkin.
The result leaves Golovkin with a 37-0-1 career record, while Alvarez is 49-1-2, his only loss coming against Floyd Mayweather in 2013.
The fight was two years in the making before the two camps agreed terms and though Golovkin came in as champion, he accepted a smaller guarantee, reportedly $3 million to Alvarez's $5 million.
Alvarez vs GolovkinTwitter
Speaking after the bout, 26-year-old Alvarez declared he wanted a rematch.
He said, through a translator: "Yes, of course, obviously yes, if the people want it, yes.
"He didn't win it was a draw. I always said I was going to be a step ahead of him. In the first rounds I came out to see what he had, then I was building from there. I think I won eight rounds."
Alvarez vs GolovkinGetty Images
Golovkin, 35, also said he wanted a rematch, but the draw means he will hold on to his belts.
It marks Golovkin's 19th title defence, which puts him just one shy of the all-time division record held by Bernard Hopkins.
The Kazakhstan native holds three of the four major middleweight title belts.