Miguel Cotto was stripped of his World Boxing Council middleweight world title, days before his anticipated bout against Mexican Saul Alvarez in Las Vegas this weekend.
The Puerto Rican (40-4-KO33) faces Alvarez (45-1-1-KO32) in Las Vegas and while the governing body have ruled that the Mexican can still become champion by winning, they are no longer prepared to recognise Cotto as the holder of the belt.
A statement on the WBC website read: “The WBC hereby announces that effective immediately has withdrawn recognition of Miguel Cotto as WBC world middleweight champion.
“If Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez wins the fight against Cotto, he will be recognized as the WBC middleweight world champion.
“The WBC’s decision is premised on the fact that Miguel Cotto and his camp are not willing to abide by the governing WBC Rules & Regulations, and the specific conditions the WBC established to sanction the fight.
“Simply put: they are not willing to respect the very same rules and conditions which applied to Cotto becoming WBC champion. The WBC wishes Miguel Cotto the best of luck as we truly regret the course of action which led to them taking such decision.”
Cotto won the belt by stopping Sergio Martinez in the tenth back in June 2014 and defended it with a fourth-round stoppage of Daniel Geale a year later.
Sportact Editors and Wire Services