By Keith Idec
Top Rank’s Carl Moretti confirmed to BoxingScene.com on Monday that Felix Verdejo’s lightweight title shot against Terry Flanagan has been postponed.
Puerto Rico’s Verdejo was supposed to challenge England’s Flanagan for the WBO world lightweight title September 16 at Copper Box Arena in London. The bout between Flanagan and Verdejo, Flanagan’s mandatory challenger, was supposed to be part of the Billy Joe Saunders-Willie Monroe Jr. undercard that night.
The Saunders-Monroe match was officially announced Monday and still will take place September 16. The new date for the Flanagan-Verdejo fight has not been discussed by Top Rank founder Bob Arum, who promotes Verdejo, and Frank Warren, Flanagan’s promoter.
“Frank Warren sent an email to Arum to let him know that Flanagan has a leg injury and the fight has to be postponed,” Moretti, Top Rank’s vice president of boxing operations, told BoxingScene.com. “That’s all we know for now. We don’t know how long Flanagan will be out or anything like that.”
El Nuevo Dia, a newspaper based in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico, was the first to report the news of the Flanagan-Verdejo postponement Monday.
The 24-year-old Verdejo (23-0, 15 KOs), who fought for Puerto Rico at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, has fought just once since stopping Mexico’s Juan Jose Martinez (26-4, 18 KOs) in the fifth round 13 months ago in The Theater at Madison Square Garden. The 135-pound contender from San Juan out-pointed Nicaragua’s Oliver Flores (27-3-2, 17 KOs) by unanimous decision in that 10-round bout February 3 in San Juan.
The 28-year-old Flanagan (33-0, 13 KOs), a southpaw from Manchester, most recently defeated Russia’s Petr Petrov (38-5-2, 19 KOs) by unanimous decision in a 12-rounder April 8 in Manchester.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.