A furious Derry Mathews has accused WBO World Lightweight champion Terry Flanagan of playing mind games after their massive title showdown at the Liverpool Echo Arena was pushed back a month to Saturday 12th March.
Manchester’s Flanagan has suffered severe tendonitis in his left foot that has left him unable to train ahead of the big fight but Mathews believes his bitter rival is running scared.
The 32-year-old said: “He doesn’t fancy this fight in Liverpool, even his manger didn’t fancy it and come fight night there’ll be nowhere for him to run; it’ll be just me and him in that ring. He’s trying to pull a fast one pretending he’s injured but he’s just delaying the inevitable; I’m taking that belt with both hands.”
He added: “If he is genuinely injured then I wish him all the luck with his recovery but if he’s trying to play mind games then he’s picked the wrong man to play them with. I’ve got the strongest mind in the business and I’ve seen it all before. Silly mind games won’t work on me, I’m fully focused on becoming the new champion in my home town.”
Boasting an impressive record of 38 career wins with 20 stoppages, Mathews is as experienced as they come and is unfazed by the challenge of facing an unbeaten fighter. The Liverpudlian is looking forward to fighting in front of his home crowd and says the pressure is all on his opponent.
“The entire country has made the mistake of writing me off before I’ve even put a foot in the ring. Apart from my team and my fans, everyone has Flanagan down as the clear favourite. That doesn’t bother me one bit, every time I’m written off by people I prove them wrong with a big win. All that matters is deep down I know it’s going to be my title and now he knows that too; he’s realised he’s in deep water” said Mathews.
Flanagan didn’t mince his words when the pair went head-to-head at a heated press conference held at Liverpool’s Hilton Hotel, boldly predicting that he’ll have no problem knocking out Mathews at any point in the fight. Derry, preparing for the 50th fight of his professional career, says his rival has another thing coming if he thinks it’ll be that easy.
He said: “I’ve got him worried; it’s clear to see for everyone. He put himself right in it when he stupidly announced he was going to knock me out, he couldn’t name a round at the press conference and here we are two weeks later still waiting to hear a round; at least now he has another five weeks to think of one!”
Terry Flanagan injured; Fight vs Derry Mathews rescheduled for March 12
An injury to WBO World Lightweight Champion Terry Flanagan has meant that his world title defence against Derry Mathews has been rescheduled from Saturday 13th February to Saturday 12th March, still at the Liverpool Echo Arena.
The Mathews versus Flanagan showdown remains the headline attraction on the title packed show and the other title fights will stay the same, which are: red-hot 160 pound talent Tommy Langford’s defends his WBO Intercontinental Middleweight title defence against Lewis Taylor and English Cruiserweight Champion Matty Askin’s seeks justice in his rematch against Lawrence Bennett.
The undercard will feature some of the best domestic talent: Former IBF World Bantamweight Champion Paul Butler, Indian superstar Vijender Singh, and Liverpool top talents Tom Stalker, Steven Lewis, Ryan Farrag, Kevin Satchell, hot Manchester prospects Macaulay McGowan and Zelpha Barrett, and Leicester ace Lyon Woodstock.
Undefeated British and Commonwealth Super-Welterweight Champion Liam Williams has been ruled out of his title defence against Nav Mansouri after he was struck down with a viral infection.
Manchester’s Flanagan has suffered severe tendonitis in his left foot that has left him unable to train for the big shoot-out against his Liverpool rival. The 28-year-old will immediately start specialist physiotherapy treatment to ensure that he will be fit and ready for the new date.
“Turbo” is devastated at having to postpone his second title defence as his training until the injury was going all according to plan. However, the all-action fighter, who’s undefeated in 29 fights, says he’s focused on recovering and defending his title against arch-rival.
Flanagan said, “This is a real blow to me as I’ve never pulled out of a fight because of an injury before and I’ve always fought through them, it’s not in my fighter’s make up to pull out of fights and my fans know that about me. I always give them one hundred percent when I’m in the ring, no matter what. I’ve had to take the advice of the medical specialists on this occasion and postpone my defence against Mathews to begin physiotherapy. I’ll be taking my treatment as seriously as I’m training for a fight and I will return back to my best, ready to defend my title successfully against Mathews on Saturday 12th March at the Echo Arena.”
Promoter Frank Warren said, “We’re all disappointed that Terry has suffered an injury and is unable to make the original date, but we’ve worked hard to ensure the mouthwatering world title showdown between Flanagan and Mathews remains the top of the bill for the new date of Saturday 12th March. I maintain that it’s going to be real war between these two warriors who are going to put everything on the line on the night. The rest of the card will remain the same with Langford and Askin in title defences and an undercard stacked with talent.”
Tickets purchased with the original date printed on the face will be valid for use on the new date of Saturday 12th March.
For any ticketing enquiries please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org