By Shaun Brown
British light-middleweight champion Brian Rose, 20-1 (5), has spoken to BoxingScene in response to mandatory challenger, Sam Webb's recent comments (in this article http://www.boxingscene.com/sam-webb-angry-with-lack-rose-rematch--56960) as to why their proposed October 13th contest fell through.
Rose was looking to win the Lonsdale belt outright against Webb after successful defences against Max Maxwell and Kris Carslaw respectively. However, the Blackpool native has reacted angrily to accusations that it is his fault they never met on the scheduled date.
"For him to make out like it's my fault is an absolute outrage,” said Rose. “And to say he's text me recently about it is a lie. He's text me in the past to wish me good luck for fights as I have to him. At the end of the day Sam is mandatory challenger for my title so the fight's got to happen.
“Sam seemed snotty with me when he sent a text (after Rose signed on to defend his newly acquired belt against Birmingham’s Max Maxwell, who scored a sixth-round KO over Rose in 2010). When I won the title, I asked Frank for Max Maxwell because I wanted to show people how brave I am by getting in with someone who had knocked me out cold.
“A few weeks into that camp, I got a text from Sam which said, ‘You’re not the man I thought you was’, and that I should be giving him the chance, not Maxwell. So I told Sam I had the opportunity to put things right with Maxwell and was doing that. I may have never got the opportunity to fight Max and get that revenge again.
“Sam sent me a text, I sent him one back and it wasn’t a horrible one — I’m not like that at all. Frank told me on the phone (when the proposed title defence did not come to fruition) that he’s on my side, that I’m who he cares for, so Sam needs to speak to his team. If Frank couldn’t afford to put us on the (David Price) bill (for the British title) then fair enough. Everyone knows how hard things are in boxing at the moment.”
Rose, regarded as one of the sport's nicest characters, sounded not only annoyed but also slightly hurt that he has made out to be the fall guy. He said: “I am sure Sam wouldn’t fight for eight rounds without the title on the line, it is a pointless fight and people fight to win these titles. It is not my fault that Frank couldn’t put the fight on, it is not Sam’s fault and we just have to crack on.”
Rose is adamant he wants a fight and is disgusted that Webb described him as a "bottler". "I am not a bottler,” stated Rose. “I'll fight anyone, I want the belt outright so fighting Sam Webb is perfect for me. I want to fight Sam Webb — I can't make that any clearer.
“I’d beat Sam nine times out of ten, so why wouldn’t I want that fight? I want to defend my title against him. I can understand him being annoyed, because he’s been waiting for his opportunity, but he needs to take his frustration out on the promoters, not me.
“I’m fighting (Vivian) Harris (on October 5) to tick over. Vivian may not be what he once was, but he's still a decent fighter,” Rose’s take on the fight against the former WBA light-welterweight title holder. “I've got to earn money for my family. My manager, Steve Wood, offered me this rather than a six or eight rounder. Vivian might be on his way out, but can still be dangerous.
“I agree this whole thing doesn't look good. Sam's a nice lad — he's like me. I didn't think he was bitter or anything, but it's obvious he's not been told everything. It is Frank Maloney’s fault, not mine."
Additional quotes by Terence Dooley.