WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman has expressed some concern to WBN over the current state of catchweights in boxing but ultimately stated that it’s the fighters safety that is paramount to him.
As Miguel Cotto and Canelo Alvarez near an agreement to fight for the WBC middleweight (160lbs) title in Las Vegas this coming November at a reported catchweight of 155lbs, Sulaiman opened up on his views towards the ever-increasing and controversial practise.
“For the WBC, there are two types of catchweights,” Suliaman exclusively explained to World Boxing News.
“One is when you have the title involved, and I will use the example of Cotto v Canelo. If they fought at 160, then that would be the division, but if they fought at 157, then that is an exclusive contract then that is between the fighters.
“The organisation have nothing to do. So had they weighed 158, 159 or 160, for the WBC that would have been okay and within the rules of the WBC commission.
Asked directly whether he personally would rather that they didn’t exist, Sulaiman was honest as always in his response.
“Catchweights have been used for many years, but it is just now we have taken notice because it seems to be getting out of hand. It is getting out of the original context.
“It’s a difficult situation to understand, but our main concern is safety. If you are the champion and you weighed 147, 149 or 150, its okay as you are within the weight division. There is no safety repercussion.
“On the other side when fighters are above their category, we do thirty-day and seven-day check weigh-ins to make sure that the fighter is not losing too much weight.
“The safety of the fighters is our main concern,” he reaffirmed.
Cotto v Canelo will follow a long list of catchweight contests, including Shawn Porter v Adrien Broner, Lucas Matthysse v Lamont Peterson and the two fighters themselves recently against Daniel Geale and Floyd Mayweather respectively.
Questions have been raised about holding a fight at five pounds under the limit when a world title is on the line, although both fighters have possibly seen the back of 154lbs anyway and may decide to compete at higher weight limits in the future.