A 22-year-old Moroccan boxer “invoked his inner Mike Tyson” when he tried biting the ear of his New Zealand opponent during a heavyweight match at the Tokyo Olympics on Tuesday.
The bizarre incident occurred during the third and final round of the showdown between Morocco’s Youness Baalla and David Nyika of New Zealand, Eurosport reported. Baalla was losing on points at the time. And in the video of the incident, the Moroccan boxer can be seen trying to get a mouthful of Nyika’s ear while the two are hugging.
Nyika, fortunately, came out of Baalla’s grips unhurt though the referee did not spot the Moroccan boxer’s biting attempt. Nyika, who ultimately won the bout 5-0, expressed his dissatisfaction with what had transpired.
“Did you see that? I don’t think the ref saw it. She was the closest one,” Nyika, 25, said. “He didn’t get a full mouthful. Luckily he had his mouthguard in and I was a bit sweaty.
“I don’t remember what I said to him but I gave him a little bit of a cheek. I have been bitten once on the chest before at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. But c’mon man, this is the Olympics.”
Tuesday’s incident was reminiscent of the infamous 1997 boxing bout where Mike Tyson bit a chunk of Evander Holyfield’s ear as they faced off in the world heavyweight match at the Madison Square Gardens. Tyson was ultimately disqualified after he bit Holyfield’s ear for the second time during the match. His boxing license was also revoked for 15 months as a result.