Junior welterweight Lucas Matthysse has cited an illness as the reason for his withdrawal from a clash with three-division titleholder Erik Morales for the WBC’s vacant “regular” championship belt that is slated for HBO Pay Per View from the MGM Grand on Sept. 17.
“I feel very hurt. This was the fight of my life. But I just couldn’t get up to fight. I am not able to,” Matthysse told BoxingScene.com. “I apologize to the [WBC] for this unexpected and painful situation.”
Golden Boy Promotions match maker Eric Gomez said that he would be working with WBC Secretary General Mauricio Sulaiman to find a suitable replacement, and that Anthony Crolla (21-2, 9 KOs) of England might be a possibility.
“Matthysse is out. He’s out 100 percent. He’s not going to fight,” said Gomez. “So we’re working with the WBC right now trying to find out who is the best possibilities and who we can fight, because Morales wants to fight for the titles.”
he 24-year-old Crolla is riding an eight-bout winning streak that includes four knockouts, including three consecutive stoppages. Crolla is scheduled to face Juan Montiel (5-4-3, 2 KOs) on the Mayweather-Ortiz undercard.
“Crolla is on the card, and he’s willing to fight, so we’ve got to see what the WBC says,” said Gomez. “Crolla was one of the original considerations for the fight with Morales, and so we’re trying to figure it out.”
Sulaiman told RingTV.com that he has heard of Matthysse’s “medical emergency,” but is still awaiting official notification from Golden Boy.
“I have heard that he has had some sort of medical problem, and we have not received yet any confirmation from the promoters. The federation has requested to get confirmation. But we have, in fact, heard that there is a problem with Matthysse,” said Sulaiman.
“I don’t know yet what we will do. We have to confirm that there is a problem and then see if the promotions continues to go with the intention of continuing with a fight against Morales. As soon as we have a scenario on which the WBC can look into, then we will do that.”
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org