WBC: Soto-Lorenzo No Contest; Rematch Ordered; Pacquiao must vacate one WBC title

14.07.08 - From WBC President Jose Sulaiman: Regarding the WBC interim super featherweight world championship fight between Humberto Soto and Francisco Lorenzo, the WBC Board of Governors has voted for the following: 1. The World Boxing Council officially confirms its decision of NO CONTEST, which was rendered at ringside on June 28..

2. Soto and Lorenzo must fight again, after the time that Lorenzo's medical suspension by the Nevada Boxing Commission's medical board has ended on December 26, 2008, with an updated thorough medical examination of Lorenzo, and the commission's approval for him to fight.

3. Due to the length of Lorenzo's medical suspension, Soto will be approved to fight for the title if that fight is before the end of October, which is about 60 days before the end of Lorenzo's suspension.

4. In spite of our friendly relationship with Lorenzo, the WBC is imposing on him a fine of $2,000 (U.S.) for his unsportsmanlike actions in the ring which were successful in influencing the referee's decision.

The WBC will not allow this type of behavior to become an example for losing boxers who try to win on unethical and false pretenses. The $2,000 fine will be donated to a children's hospital in the Dominican Republic, the home of Lorenzo, with the donation handled directly and personally by the Dominican Boxing Federation on behalf of the WBC.

5. The present double WBC world champion at lightweight and super featherweight, Manny Pacquiao of the Philippines, must announce by July 28 which title he has decided to keep. If he decides to relinquish the lightweight division title and keep the super featherweight title, Soto must fight Pacquiao for the WBC super featherweight world title, with Lorenzo fighting the winner.

The WBC Board of Governors believes that its ruling, expressed above, is the least controversial possible. This is the official decision rendered by a majority vote of the Board of Governors, to which I am fully committed as President.

I would like to have the liberty of expressing my personal feelings, as well as my feelings as WBC president, that Humberto Soto has been the victim of one of the most unfair decisions that I have seen in my 57 years as a boxing commissioner, which have been devoted to a life-long struggle for justice. The world saw his tremendous performance against Lorenzo for the entire fight.

However, I respect the WBC Board of Governors' ruling, done in the spirit of justice, for the least controversial and best solution of this matter.

I would like to finish by expressing my deepest pride and honor to be a part of the exemplary, perservering and passionate group of people integrated in the WBC, who are totally dedicated to the sport that they love without receiving any compensation.

Article posted on 15.07.2008

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