Now this one is weird. At today’s official weigh-in ahead of tomorrow’s rematch between Mauricio Lara and Leigh Wood, who was fighting for the WBA featherweight title Lara snatched from Wood in January, Mexican Lara fell short of the 126-pound limit. Or should I write how Lara had no opportunity to earn £126.
Yesterday, the British Boxing Inspection Board, dealing with weight management, decided that it would not be in Lara’s best interests if she weighed 126 pounds. Lara, heavy, was told he couldn’t weigh less than 128 1/2 pounds. And today, a moment ago, at the weigh-in, the defending WBA world champion bet on 129.8. Wood called for 125.9.
Now there is a high probability that Lara will be stripped of the WBA title for failing to lose weight. However, Lara’s argument is that he was not even allowed to TRY to earn £126. That’s not the only problem with tomorrow’s fight, as Ben Davison, Wood’s challenger trainer, says he could pull his man out of the fight as a result of this whole weigh-in mess.
Of course, at 125.9 against Lara’s 129.8, Wood is at a disadvantage.
Fight promoter Eddie Hearn tried to explain this to Talk Sport:
“Obviously in the last few days when both fighters were making championship weight at the BBB of C they were controlling weight in fight week, they weren’t happy with Lara’s weight at that time,” Hearn said. “They finally made the decision that Lara couldn’t weigh less than 128.5 on the scale. They were happy with Wood’s weight and he can make the championship weight, he can win the world title on Saturday night. The WBA will issue its own individual ruling. As we usually know, if the championship fighter doesn’t make the championship weight, he will lose the belt weight and the belt will become empty.
So do with what you want. Have you ever seen anything similar before? Surely it should be a simple case, if a fighter doesn’t make weight, the fight is called off, unless the other fighter is willing to accept some kind of compensation, such as a share of the opponent’s wallet. But Coach Davison has every right to be angry right now.
“Realistically, this shouldn’t be happening, right? It’s a shame to be honest,” Davison said. “It’s an absolute mess. Leigh was already on the scale before we found out what weight he (Lara) wants to get to. I can’t sit here and say that it’s 100 percent ruled out that the fight won’t happen tomorrow. I can’t say it. This is a discussion I need to have with Leigh.
Needless to say, if the fight goes ahead and Wood is knocked out, he will have a real complaint of being beaten by a much heavier fighter. On the one hand, Wood is desperate for revenge and refuses to back down from the fight. On the other hand, can this fight now be on an equal footing?
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