Englishman Lee Haskin’s has become the IBF bantamweight champion by default after Randy Caballero tipped the scales at yesterday’s weigh-in at 123.5 lbs, a full 5.5 lbs over the sanctioned limit.
The two were set to meet on the Cotto/Canelo undercard tonight in Las Vegas for the Californian’s strap, yet after the weigh-in debacle and Haskins [correct] refusal to fight on at a catch-weight, he will return to the UK in a bittersweet mood as the new IBF titlist.
“I’m world champion though I don’t feel like one. I can’t wait to just get my first defence in now and prove I’m worthy as a world class fighter,” he told iFLtv.
“On this kind of stage you train really hard and I had really wanted to impress, especially in Vegas. You don’t get this kind of chance often, though I’m not gonna get that now.”
After his team refused to fight on given the huge weight disadvantage, it’s likely that Haskins will lose his scheduled purse, given their has been no fight, though has the consolation of becoming a world champion, even if by default.
“I would probably have taken the [catchweight] fight. I would rather have lost in a great exciting fight and given Britain something to watch, something for me to be proud of. I’m taking the belt home but I don’t feel like a world champion.
“It was very unprofessional him coming in 5.5 lbs over the weight,” Haskins added. “I was 110% ready to get in there and do the business.”
“My manager, Jamie Sanigar is going to talk to GBP [about the purse]. We spent a fair bit of money coming over here for training camp, so it’d be good to get some back.”