WBC Statement Regarding Castillo, Corrales

June 7, 2006. World Boxing Council, Jose Sulaiman, President. Having heard some statements in an interview on Showtime, as well as some media articles and direct questions with the WBC in regards to the failure of Jose Luis Castillo to make the weight in his title fight against champion Diego Corrales, the WBC feels compelled to issue the present statement..

1. In 1997, as a result of the First World Boxing Medical Congress, which was attended by ring doctors from 83 nations, the WBC instituted Rule 4.6 to mandate three weigh-ins for contending boxers for a WBC title, 30 and 7 days weigh-ins with a 10% and 5% overweight allowed, respectively, as well as the final and official weigh-in 30 to 24 hours before the bouts.

2. On occasion of the first time that boxer Jose Luis Castillo could not make the official weight on October 8, 2005, for the rematch with Diego Corrales, the WBC sent a letter to the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) and the promoters, dated October 13, 2005, as well as an international press release, where the WBC requested specific actions for a future fight if it would be held, including the three weigh-ins and medical examinations.

3. Unfortunately, the WBC did not receive a response from anyone.

4. On April 17, 2006, the WBC sent a letter to Top Rank for our approval of the WBC title fight between Corrales and Castillo. The letter contained several conditions, including point number 6 of that letter that stated, "We must receive the 30-day weigh-in of both fighters on May 3, as well as the 7-day weigh-in of both fighters on May 27, 2006."

5. Unfortunately, the WBC did not receive a response from anyone.

6. As the promoters did not send to the WBC the 30-day weigh-in requested from them by May 3, 2006, and especially because of the precedent of October 7, 2005, and in lieu of the precedent experience and the WBC's commitment to safety as an utmost priority, the WBC on May 9 sent WBC officer Juan Carlos Manzano, together with the Executive Secretary of the State of Mexico Boxing Commission, to the mountains of Temoaya, Toluca, which is three hours away from Mexico City, to register the weight of Jose Luis Castillo. Castillo registered then a weight of 68.200 kilograms (150 pounds).

7. As this was in excess of the 10% allowed by the WBC Rules, on May 12, 2006, the Executive WBC Office sent a letter to Top Rank Promotions, Promociones Zanfer, NSAC, NABF, and Gary Shaw Promotions, stating that Jose Luis Castillo was found two pounds over the 10% limit for the 30-day weigh-in prior to the bout. The excess weight over 10% was even more critical, as there were only three weeks to go for the bout, and not the 30 days prescribed in the Rules that the parties did not go through.

8. Unfortunately, the WBC did not receive a response from anyone.

9. The WBC decided, due to the circumstances, and again based on safety considerations, to make another trip to the mountains in Temoaya on May 17, 2006, for a second weigh-in of Jose Luis Castillo. Again, WBC officer Juan Carlos Manzano attended, this time in company of Dr. Jose Luis Ibarra, Commissioner of the Mexico City Boxing Commission. The result was 66.800 kilograms (147 pounds).

10. The WBC issued on the same date, May 17, 2006, a letter and a press release stating that Jose Luis Castillo was within the 10% parameter of the 30-day weigh-in rule. It was very clear to all concerned, however, that this weigh-in was done two weeks before the event.

This letter stated that the next weigh-in should be performed on May 27, 2006, just seven days before the fight, as stated by WBC Rules, when Castillo must register 142 pounds at the most.

11. Unfortunately, the WBC did not receive a response from anyone.

12. On May 27, 2006, seven days before the fight, as the WBC inquired on the status of the 7-day weigh-in, we were informed that Jose Luis Castillo was already in Nevada. The WBC did not receive notice from Castillo's representative, his promoter, or the NSAC, advising the WBC in connection with the 7-day weigh-in, as indicated and required on the various letters described herein.

13. Mr. Luis Escalona, WBC Executive Weight Supervisor, was in Las Vegas for the NABF convention and intended to check up Castillo, but had to fly to Mexico City due to the serious illness of his mother, who very sadly passed away on June 2, 2006.

14. The morning of Friday, June 2, the WBC received a call from Mr. Jose Luis Gomez Camarillo, the prestigious writer for the top sports newspaper in Mexico, Esto, who called with serious concern about the health of Jose Luis Castillo, and stated that he noticed that Castillo was excessivelly weak and pained, as he has never seen him before.

- Mr. Camarillo believed that Castillo had serious signs of dehydration, with his lips excessively dried out all around his mouth, and that he looked very fatigued.

- On the evening of Thursday, he noticed that Castillo went to the Caesars Palace that was closed.

- He also found out from Castillo that he ate only little fruit and one can of "Ensure" during the whole day of Wednesday.

- On Thursday, Castillo only had one can of "Ensure" and drank no water.

Due to those circumstances, the President of the WBC called the office of the NSAC, trying to talk to Mr. Keith Kizer, but his call was transfered to his cell, which did not answer. The President intended to let the commission know the report of the writer.

Mauricio Sulaiman contacted Mr. Kizer to let him know the position that Diego Corrales would successfully defend his title if he made the weight and Castillo could not after the two-hour extension period.

Since at least October of last year, the WBC was very insistent to all parties concerned, directly and constantly, regarding the extreme importance of monitoring the weight of Jose Luis Castillo. The WBC, very sadly, got no information back, ever, from any of the camps of the two boxers, nor from the promoter, the representatives or the NSAC. We feel compelled to admit that the WBC was simply ignored and the WBC feels very bad about the whole situation, as everybody lost and nobody won.

The President of the WBC has expressed, that even when he was going into a long medical treatment at UCLA in Los Angeles, he is extremely sorry for what happened and even when the WBC did everything possible to prevent this problem, he takes full responsibility for his not taking action on the non-response of the parties, due to his permanently friendly attitude towards all of them; Mr. Sulaiman also feels bad for having accepted to be ignored.

Some of the actions of the WBC for the future will be:

1. Concerned about the health of Jose Luis Castillo, the WBC will issue a medical suspension for 6 months during which he must get a full medical examination at UCLA in Los Angeles, under the supervision of Dr. Gerald Finerman, Chief Medical Advisor to the WBC, as well as an examination for a body metabolism fat level.

If the body metabolism fat level shows that Castillo can safely remain in the 135 pound division, the WBC will issue a fine to his team and to the boxer himself.

If the metabolism shows that he can not make safely the 135 pound limit, the WBC will rate Jose Luis Castillo in the appropriate division according to such medical test.

2. In regards to champion Diego Corrales, the WBC will authorize him a voluntary defense at his convenience against any of the WBC rated fighters.

Having the experience that many times actions more than words show the good and bad of matters, the WBC expects that boxers. representatives and promoters take this very important safety rule in much, much serious conditions for its full respect.

The WBC acknowledges that there has been inconsistency in this rule, as there are several promoters in United States who fully comply with it, there are others who might believe that this is not an important rule.

We are very proud with those in the U.S. and all other in the world, who do follow this important safety rule that was implemented to have title competing boxers train safely and scientifically to arrive at the date of the fight in good and safe conditions.

The WBC will constructively review this situation during our 44th Annual WBC World Convention to be held in Dubrovnik, Croatia, from October 29 to November 4, 2006, for the future, to have a more clear and better agreement between the parties in boxing, especially on the items of safety rules and actions, and that promoters will have a very thorough participation in this important safety rule.

Article posted on 08.06.2006

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