Darleys Perez: No chance Anthony Crolla takes my belt
In what is perhaps the most intriguing rematch of the year, WBA Lightweight Champion Darleys Perez (32-1-1, 20 KOs) plans to win in convincing fashion against England’s Anthony Crolla (29-4-3, 11 KOs) on Saturday, Nov. 21, at Manchester Arena in England.
The initial bout in July, which took place at the same venue where the rematch will be contested, ended in a controversial draw that featured point deductions against Colombia’s Perez and puzzling scoring from one judge.
Perez, who was fighting in Crolla’s hometown nonetheless, had one judge score the fight in his favor (114-113), while another had it for Crolla (116-111). The third judge had it even at 113-113.
Perez, however, was deducted one point on two separate occasions for low blows. If not for the deductions, Perez would have won by majority decision.
“The rematch will settle the score,” said Perez, who is co-promoted through Thompson Boxing Promotions and Gary Shaw Productions. “I’m not going to leave any doubt in any judges’ mind as to who the better boxer is.”
Boxing fans can enjoy the explosive rematch on AWE available on AT&T U-Verse, CH. 147 and 1147 in HD, Verizon FiOS TV, CH. 169 and 669 in HD, and numerous regional cable providers across the nation. Please check www.awetv.com for start times.
Both boxers have overcome tremendous adversity to arrive at this stage in their careers. Perez avoided and escaped the ultra violent drug wars while growing up in Colombia. As for Crolla, late last year, he nearly lost his life after coming to the aid of his neighbor during a home invasion. Crolla managed to chase the burglars away, but not before the altercation left him with a fractured ankle and serious head injury.
“This is an incredible fight that matches two world class boxers against each other,” said Ken Thompson, president of Thompson Boxing. “That Perez and Crolla have a controversial history only makes this fight even more exciting. We believe Perez will fight to his full potential and come away with an undisputed win and retain his world championship.”
“It’s clear to me that Darleys Perez is very focused for this fight,” said Gary Shaw of Gary Shaw Productions. “He knows what’s on the line and the many doors that will open up for him with a victory. I’ve had fighters come out victorious when they’ve traveled to other countries and fought for world titles. Perez already proved he can get a fair shake with a gritty performance. The judging nowadays is fairer then it’s ever been. When Perez meets Crolla, only one man will come out victorious, and I believe it will be Perez.”
DARLEYS PEREZ TRAINING CAMP NOTES
What are your thoughts on the first fight with Crolla?
“It was a tough fight. That night I didn’t perform as well as I wanted to, but I was able to manage the situation. I retained my world title, despite the point deductions.”
Do you plan to fight Crolla differently in the rematch?
“After fighting for twelve rounds I think we now know each other pretty well. It probably will be a totally different fight for both of us.”
Talk about your preparation for this fight.
“Training camp has been great. This time we decided to stay in Barranquilla (Colombia) and I want to thank my team for supporting me in this decision. I got excellent sparring from boxers coming from Venezuela, and also from my teammates at the gym. I feel very strong mentally and physically.”
How confident are you going back to the UK and winning in Crolla’s hometown?
“I’m going to win. There’s no doubt about that. There is no chance Crolla takes my belt. I’m 100 percent sure that with my skills and preparation I will still be the champion.”