Italian wrestler Chamizo calls UWW judges "bribed and corrupt people". INSTAGRAM / FRANK CHAMIZOS

The 74kg competition at the 2024 European Wrestling Qualifiers in Baku ended in a major scandal when one of the semi-finalists, Italy's Frank Chamizo Marquez, disagreed with the judges' decisions in his deciding bout against Azerbaijan's Turan Bayramov.

Chamizo was down 0-6 at the start of the bout, but managed to come back and in the final seconds of the fight the score was 8-8 with Bayramov leading on the criteria.  Throughout the fight, Chamizo and his team disagreed with the referee's decisions on several occasions. 

In the final seconds, the referee gave the Italian two points when Bayramov put his knee to the canvas. Chamizo took the lead, but after a challenge from the Azerbaijani coach, the decision was overturned and Bayramov was awarded the win. 

The former Cuban wrestler posted the video of the final seconds of the bout. "I want to apologise to whoever is watching this. My sport is beautiful. This is just a group of bribed and corrupted, my heart cries with such sadness. My sport is beautiful. My sport is beautiful. I'm sorry, I'm sorry," Chamizo wrote on his Instagram.

Some of the famous wrestlers supported Chamizo in the comments. Three-time world champion and Tokyo 2020 bronze medallist Frank Staebler (Germany): "I'm suffering with you, my friend." Tokyo 2020 bronze medallist Myles Amine (San Marino): "This is terrible, absolute robbery. I'm sorry, brother."

2015 World silver medallist Rustam Assakalov (Uzbekistan): "You are a warrior, you fought today and did everything that depended on you, but such judges need to be destroyed and thrown out and our sport should be bright and fair, don't give up or continue."

Rio 2016 champion Helen Maroulis: "This is terrible, you have been robbed!" Tokyo 2020 champion Luis Orta Sanchez (Cuba): "Go for it champion, you'll win your Olympic place, it's a shame these things happen."

Bayramov accused his rival of winning fights with the help of the judges. "Chamizo should not forget that he won five or six fights because of the biased decisions of the judges, and as a result he became a European, World and Olympic medallist," he said.

"I am not saying that the judges are biased against me. There is no such thing. The World Wrestling Federation itself has sympathy for Chamizo. Toghrul Asgarov beat him in the World Championship, but they didn't give him the title. Maybe Chamizo needs to be reminded of that," concluded the Azerbaijani.

Chamizo still has a chance to qualify for the Olympic Games at the World Qualifiers in Istanbul, Turkey in May.