By Kevin Francis, courtesy of The Daily Star
FRANK WARREN last night branded WBO world light-heavyweight champ Juergen Braehmer “a joke and a disgrace”.
Juergen Braehmer pulled out of Saturday’s title defence against Welshman Nathan Cleverly at London’s 02 Arena.
But promoter Frank Warren only found out via the internet and said: “The actions of Braehmer and his people are the most unprofessional I have ever experienced in boxing.”
German Braehmer, 32, failed to appear at Heathrow Airport on Tuesday – claiming to have missed his original flight.
After another no-show yesterday, website reports claimed a cut eye sustained in training meant that he could not meet unbeaten Cleverly.
Warren stormed: “I had a driver there waiting for him both days yet no-one from his camp even bothered to ring us. Yet they e-mailed their hotel cancelling their rooms.
“It is utterly unprofessional and he should be stripped of his title.
“He must have cut his eye between missing those flights!
“We had a medical certificate the other day that didn’t mention it.
“This is a disgrace and totally unprofessional.
“His people didn’t even have the decency or courtesy to contact us and we had to read about it on the internet.
“Something needs to be done about it and I will be complaining to the WBO about it.
“I have never, ever seen anything so unprofessional.”
Cleverly, 24, was devastated and said: “I’ve been gunning for him for over a year now.
“He is the champion and what he has done is very unprofessional. He has ducked out of the fight as far as I am concerned.
“The proof is now there that he doesn’t want to fight me.
“I wanted this fight bad and he has let everyone down. I knew he didn’t want the fight – I had a feeling he would not turn up.
“It’s a major disappointment. He is an awesome fighter, he is getting paid well, why not take the fight?”
Warren was locked in talks with the WBO yesterday and interim champion Cleverly is likely to be declared title holder by default.
Another ranked opponent will be found and Cleverly could end up making the first defence of a title he has won without having to fight!
Now James DeGale’s British super-middleweight title defence against domestic rival George Groves, the Commonwealth champ, will clearly be the main event of the night.