Alan Hubbard ©insidethegames

Back in 1951, as a 13-year-old schoolboy, I fell in love with boxing after experiencing my first world title fight - that between Sugar Ray Robinson and Britain's Randolph Turpin for the Middleweight Championship at Earls Court.

I was not there, and this was the days before live boxing on the box, pay-per-view, closed circuit TV and all that jazz.

No, it was steam radio only, and I stayed up to listen to the broadcast of a contest that remains etched in the memory.

The commentary was exciting but totally misleading. You would have thought the great champion Sugar Ray walked it but after 15 torrid rounds it was Turpin's hand that was rightly raised by referee Eugene Henderson. The 18,000 crowd went wild - as did the nation.

Turpin had travelled to Earls Court by tube but he returned home to Leamington a hero.

Listening in to that historic contest was an unforgettable experience. So I decided to do it all again with the recent World Boxing Organization (WBO) World Heavyweight title fight from the Manchester Arena.

As an incorrigible technophobe, I could not be bothered forking out £15 ($20/€17) to fathom out how to get this bout between Britain's Hughie Fury, and the Kiwi holder Joseph Parker, on YouTube.

Instead I tuned in to the BBC Radio Five Live broadcast with the estimable commentary team of Mike Costello and Steve Bunce telling me how it was. As usual, they made the action as vivid to the ear as it would be to the eye.

And here is a funny thing. Just like their predecessors Raymond Glendenning and W Barrington Dalby 66 years ago, they called it the wrong way.

The fight between Joseph Parker, right, and Hughie Fury led to criticism of judging ©Getty Images
The fight between Joseph Parker, right, and Hughie Fury led to criticism of judging ©Getty Images

The commentary was first rate as usual but it definitely leaned towards young Fury.

Costello reckoned Fury won by two rounds and guest pundit David Price, the former super-heavyweight Olympic bronze medallist, had it 7-4-1 in the Brit's favour. Bunce had it all square at 6-6, in line with one of the two American judges.

As someone who failed O-level maths abysmally many years ago I am in no position to mark anyone's card and as I say I was not there.

But I know a few who were and the consensus, outside the Fury camp, was that Parker had won by between two to four rounds.

Now some people will always tell you that there is something about boxing that does not quite add up. And sometimes they are right - it is the scorecards of those ringside judges who see what is happening in the ring rather differently to the rest of us.

Deeply controversial scoring of contests is nothing new. It has gone on since the days when the referee was the sole arbiter.

But just lately we have seen a spate of arithmetical aberrations that have raised sceptical eyebrows even higher than usual 

So let us make one thing clear. Boxing is the most subjective sport of them all, totally decided by opinion unless there is a knock-out, retirement or referee's intervention.

And opinions may vary as to the virtues of what constitutes aggression, scoring punches, defensive footwork and so on.

Sometimes the judges, like the pundits, get things wrong but it is poor judgement or incompetence, and certainly not corruption.

After all, one crisp right-hander to the chops can render the best-laid Machiavellian plans asunder.

After covering a whole array of sports for more than half a century, including just about every one in the Olympic Games, I can tell you that boxing is by no means top of the list when it comes to dubious decisions.

I have seen far worse howlers in gymnastics and ice dancing for instance. And God knows what goes on in dressage.

How often do we see football and rugby referees, and cricket and tennis umpires, making mistakes?

True, new technology now assists the human eye in several sports and maybe one day this will come to boxing.

Though the short-lived experiment with computer scoring in Olympic boxing created even greater angst and controversy.

Technology now assists officials in sports such as tennis ©Getty Images
Technology now assists officials in sports such as tennis ©Getty Images

Boxing always seems to get it in the neck when there is a judging dispute over scoring yet sometimes a bout can be difficult to assess, especially when there is so much hit and miss as there seemed to be in Manchester last weekend.

Nor am I making excuses for what happened in Las Vegas a fortnight ago when Gennady Golovkin's fantastic fight with Canelo Álvarez was declared a daft draw.

Or when two of the three judges at that WBO match between Parker and Fury had a touch of the Adalaide Byrds and made the Kiwi champion the winner by a runaway 118-110 margin.

By all accounts it was a dull, dour fight, with the second US judge giving it to Parker by an astonishing ten rounds to two, as did Britain's Terry O'Connor.

Now here is a funny thing. If anyone might have had the dead needle towards the Samoan-born New Zealander it was Wolverhampton's ex-heavyweight O'Connor, who had been jocked off as the ref because of objections by the Parker people.

But O'Connor still called it as he saw it and obviously did not allow the slight he had suffered to prejudice his judgement so heavily in Parker's favour.

He may have erred badly, just as Mrs Byrd did in Vegas, but at least it was an honest opinion, if one with which the vast majority disagreed. 

By all accounts Parker, who is not the greatest heavyweight champ there has ever been, won on aggression, keeping Fury on the back-foot from where it is always difficult to succeed by counter-punching.

Fury's promoter Mick Hennessy went ballistic at the result, alleging "corruption" and threatening a formal protest to the WBO and legal action.

He also tweeted thus: "I thought it was an absolute disgrace...Parker wasn't even in the fight. One of the worst decisions I've ever seen".

He even described Hughie's performance as "shades of Ali".

Calm down dear! Wrong Ali.

What Hughie needed to win was not the footwork of Muhammad Ali but the arm power of the England cricketer Moeen Ali so he could try to hit Parker for six.

At least that would have caught the judges' eyes...and possibly Parker's chin.

Video officials are becoming more commonplace across sport ©Getty Images
Video officials are becoming more commonplace across sport ©Getty Images

It was a close fight and the quiet, likeable Hughie - as different to volatile cousin Tyson as chalk and cheese - did well considering his long ring absence. At only 23 he is young and talented enough to come again, and he will soon be back in the title picture.

He will be better for the experience, has a great chin and would hold his own as a viable contender for either of the two other world heavyweight champions, Anthony Joshua and Deontay Wilder, though he might struggle to actually beat them.

And talking of voting on your opinion, another 23-year-old. Birmingham's Sam Eggington has been named as Britain's best young boxer of the year by the Boxing Writers Club.

Although well beaten by Bradley Skeete last year he has bounced back to win the European welterweight title and pipped my choice, the undefeated Zelfa Barrett, also a welterweight, for the prestigious award.

Let us hope that Sam avoids the jinx that has blighted the previous three winners of the annual award: Kid Galahad failed a drugs test and both Mitchell Smith and Liam Williams lost their subsequent bouts.

As Eggington defends his European belt against French southpaw Mohamed Mimoune in Manchester on Saturday (October 7), two days before the Awards Dinner at London's Savoy, club members will be crossing their fingers that he does not get beaten.

If he does, then it will be a case of Egg-ington on faces...