A HEAVYWEIGHT boxer PUNCHED the referee after being handed a controversial loss.
Iago Kiladze and Viktor Faust were putting on an entertaining fight with five knockdowns in the first two rounds on the Charles Martin vs Victor Ortiz undercard on Saturday night.
Kiladze was knocked down for the third time in Florida but managed to get up and beat the count.
However, referee Samuel Burgos was not satisfied with his slight stagger when Kiladze was walking forwards and suddenly called the contest off – sparking huge outrage.
Fans booed loudly as Faust, 29, celebrated taking his pro record to 9-0 despite just 32 punches combined in the four-and-a-half-minute fight.
And Kiladze's fury boiled over inside the ring, too.
The 35-year-old then aimed a soft right-hand jab at the referee's chin as Burgos waved in his face.
A shocked Burgos stood his ground and shouted at the boxer: "What the f*** are you doing? Fight’s over!"
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And a commentator calling the action added: "You cannot do this. That’s going to cost him money, you can’t do that, you can’t get violent with the referee."
Thankfully Burgos was unhurt and is understood to have been laughing about the incident later on.
But the defeat could be costly for Kiladze.
The Georgian fighter, who lost to Joe Joyce in September 2018, has now won 27 of his 34 boxing bouts.
Opinions were split on social media regarding the flashpoint with the referee.
One Twitter user said: "Never good for a fighter to touch a ref, but I don't blame Kiladze for being upset.
"Not a great stoppage IMO & the ref did seem to show some favouritism for the undefeated Faust."
Another wrote: "Kiladze punched the referee! LMAO! This just turned into a WWE style fight!"
And a third added: "I don’t agree with the stoppage at all, but also not a reason for Kiladze to do that to the referee."
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