Saturday’s anticipated middlweight matchup between Miguel Cotto and Canelo Alvarez is now a non-title affair as the WBC announced the withdrawal of Cotto’s championship status today.
Although the fight is being contested at a catchweight of 155 pounds, the WBC had been willing to honor the bout pending the compliance of both fighters to the organization’s “rules and regulations.” According to the WBC, Canelo has agreed to their terms, making him eligible to obtain the title should be win Saturday. Cotto was unwilling to fork over $300, 000 of his purse for the WBC’s sanctioning fee. If Cotto is victorious, the belt becomes vacant.
“The WBC’s decision is premised on the fact that Miguel Cotto and his camp are not willing to abide by the governing WBC Rules & Regulations, and the specific conditions the WBC established to sanction the fight,” explained the WBC in a prepared statement. “Simply put: they are not willing to respect the very same rules and conditions which applied to Cotto becoming WBC champion. The WBC wishes Miguel Cotto the best of luck as we truly regret the course of action which led to them taking such decision.”
Cotto won the belt in June 2014 with a 10th corner stoppage over Sergio Martinez. Cotto has made his first defense this past June in knocking out Daniel Geale in four rounds.
Gennady Golovkin remains the #1 contender for the belt and took step-aside money totaling $800, 000 to allow Cotto-Canelo to take place.
You can read the WBC statement in its entirety below.
The World Boxing Council worked tirelessly through a process that began over two years ago to secure the celebration of the highly anticipated fight between Miguel Cotto and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. The WBC is proud of that accomplishment that is giving boxing fans around the world a very important fight to see.
After several weeks of communications, countless attempts and good faith time extensions trying to preserve the fight as a WBC World Championship, Miguel Cotto and his promotion did not agree to comply with the WBC Rules & Regulations, while Saúl Alvarez has agreed to do so. Accordingly, the WBC must rule on the matter prior to the fight.
The WBC hereby announces that effective immediately has withdrawn recognition of Miguel Cotto as WBC World Middleweight Champion. If Saul “Canelo” Alvarez wins the fight against Cotto, he will be recognized as the WBC middleweight world champion.
The WBC’s decision is premised on the fact that Miguel Cotto and his camp are not willing to abide by the governing WBC Rules & Regulations, and the specific conditions the WBC established to sanction the fight. Simply put: they are not willing to respect the very same rules and conditions which applied to Cotto becoming WBC champion. The WBC wishes Miguel Cotto the best of luck as we truly regret the course of action which led to them taking such decision.
The WBC is a non-profit governing organization founded 53 years ago. The WBC has implemented all of the current rules in the sport, paving the way to a much safer boxing. The WBC creates, implements and enforces, its Rules & Regulations to bring safety, order, unity, justice and equality to a sport that was marred with abuse and unfairness. Since the first day of existence of our organization, the WBC has taken countless actions for the protection of the boxer and it is a fact that most if not all boxers dream of conquering the green belt.
The WBC stands by its honorability and will not participate in the abuse of power and greediness, which has taken our boxing world to regrettable actions from different parties. The WBC wishes the promotion great success and we are satisfied that this great fight for boxing will be enjoyed by millions of fans around the world.