Boxing-Ring announcer quits after backlash to wrong winner call

By Thomson Reuters May 14, 2024 | 9:21 PM

SYDNEY (Reuters) – The American ring announcer who called out the wrong winner after a women’s WBA title fight in Australia last weekend is quitting the role after receiving a torrent of abuse on social media.

Dan Hennessey mistakenly announced England’s Nina Hughes as the winner of her WBA bantamweight bout against Cherneka Johnson on the undercard of Vasiliy Lomachenko’s fight against George Kambosos Jr in Perth on Sunday.

In scenes of confusion that went viral on social media, Hennessey then called the fighters back to the centre of the ring and correctly awarded the fight and belt to Australian Johnson.

Hennessey initially apologised on his Facebook page saying he was “crushed” by the error before adding another post late on Tuesday announcing that he would act as Master of Ceremonies one last time before hanging up his bow tie for good.

“Thank you all for the kind words. Unfortunately the worldwide backlash is absolutely incredible and it’s affecting my mental health to a degree where I will have one more show ever,” he wrote.

“I am doing this show because I am still a man of my word … I love and will keep in touch with all my friends from around the world. Thank you. No longer the world’s punching bag. I’m out.”

A former U.S. Marine Corps officer and nightclub DJ, Hennessey relocated to New Zealand a couple of decades ago and has been on the microphone for many of the biggest fights in Australasia over the last 18 years.

(Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Christian Schmollinger)