Julio Cesar Martinez and McWilliams Arroyo continue to find ways to not meet in the ring.
BoxingScene.com has confirmed that the oft-postponed WBC flyweight title consolidation bout takes another hit. An undisclosed injury has forced Puerto Rico’s Arroyo to withdraw from their scheduled December 3 rematch to have aired on DAZN from the Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale, Arizona.
A new opponent will be sought for Mexico City’s Martinez (18-2, 14KOs; 2NC), who will remain on the show in what will now become a voluntary title defense. Matchroom Boxing matchmaker Kevin Rooney Jr. confirmed the development during the annual WBC convention in Acapulco.
The rematch was due to serve as the chief support on a show headlined by the anticipated rubber match between lineal junior bantamweight champion Juan Francisco Estrada (43-3, 28KOs) and former four-division champ Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez (51-3, 41KOs).
Instead, the bout suffers his fourth delay in a rivalry that appears to have been doomed from the sport. It comes less than three weeks after Arroyo (21-4, 16KOs; 1NC) strangely announced his retirement, only to clarify that it will come after his rematch with Martinez.
For now, it means a delay until 2023 unless the interim WBC flyweight titlist walks away from the sport altogether.
Martinez will seek to make the fifth defense of his title against an opponent to be determined, having not fought since a non-title fight points loss to Gonzalez on March 5 in San Diego.
The one actual meeting between the two came last November 19 in Manchester, New Hampshire. The fight came together after Martinez previously withdrew from an August 2020 clash due to illness and a February 2021 showdown in Miami Gardens, Florida due to injury. Their planned rematch on June 25 in San Antonio saw Mexico City’s Martinez withdraw during fight week, once again citing illness. The development came too far into fight week for Matchroom Boxing to secure a replacement opponent in time to leave Arroyo on the show.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox