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We nearly had a repeat of Mike Tyson chomping off Evander Holyfield’s ear Tuesday in Tokyo during an Olympic heavyweight boxing match. Moroccan boxer Youness Baalla was disqualified after he opened up wide and tried to bite his opponent’s ear.
New Zealand’s David Nyika was declared the winner of the fight even though he was ahead in points and was going to win anyway. Olympics officials determined the match was over due to “intolerable action” and ruled that Baalla “very clearly intended to bite the ear/face of his opponent,” New Zealand media outlet Stuff reported.
That's not the Olympic spirit! pic.twitter.com/w6SSb98OFi
— Joe Kinsey (@JoeKinseyexp) July 27, 2021
“He didn’t get a full mouthful. Luckily he had his mouthguard in, and I was a bit sweaty, but come on man, this is the Olympics, get your s… together,” Nyika said after the fight.
This isn’t the first time Nyika has been targeted by a biter. Stuff reports that three years ago, the boxer was bitten during a Commonwealth Games match.
It didn’t take long for New Zealand fans to go after Baalla on Instagram where they were bombarding him with the typical messages after one tries to bite off a guy’s ear, but Nyika stepped in and told them to stop.
“Please read: The heat of battle can bring the best AND the worst out of people. This is part of sport. I have nothing but respect for my opponent and can appreciate the frustration he must have felt,” the Kiwi wrote on Instagram. “Please don’t reach out to him if you have nothing nice to say.”