Vasyl Lomachenko says he gave Devin Haney costly 12th round in controversial decision loss

Controversial: Many felt Lomachenko deserved to beat Haney  (Getty Images)
Controversial: Many felt Lomachenko deserved to beat Haney (Getty Images)

Vasyl Lomachenko admits he eased up the action during the final round of his controversial unanimous decision loss to Devin Haney on Saturday night.

‘The Dream’ defended his undisputed lightweight crown in Las Vegas after a thrilling contest at the MGM Grand Arena.

Haney recovered from some difficult rounds in the tenth and eleventh and finished with a strong closing three minutes to move to 30-0.

The three judges at ringside awarded the 24-year-old the fight 116-112, 115-113 and 115-113 despite a valiant performance from the Ukrainian.

Lomachenko’s manager Egis Klimas was angry with the scoring and vowed to appeal the decision.

Prominent voices from within what looks like boxing’s most entertaining division in Ryan Garcia and Shakur Stevenson publicly stated the 35-year-old should have been awarded the fight and the result was met with boos inside the auditorium.

In a post-fight press conference, Lomachenko admitted he thought he had done enough to win and duly took the last round off.

“[I thought] maybe I can give him this round,” he said.

“I don’t need to win this round because I was winning the other 11 rounds. I don’t say every round but during the rounds, it was mine.

“I don’t know, maybe I don’t understand boxing.”