Much as it was a scrap we were extremely keen to put on for the British fight fans, it looks like the Manchester lightweight derby between Terry Flanagan and Anthony Crolla has gone by the board – for now, at least.
Twice we have tried to tempt Crolla to the table with offers to fight his city rival in a fight which would have resonated far beyond the Manchester boundaries, but both times he opted for the challenge of attempting to overthrow the Venezuelan stylist Jorge Linares.
Unfortunately, he has twice come up short and I am afraid that Terry is nobody’s consolation prize.
In any case, Turbo Terry has got serious business of his own to attend to before we make definitive moves regarding his next fight – and he can’t afford to misfire.
Petr Petrov provides a genuine threat to Terry’s unbeaten record on April 8 at the Manchester Arena. He wanted a test and, believe me, he has got one on his hands with Petrov.
Crolla suffering back-to-back defeats is the reason his team now appear prepared to talk turkey. Were he still in possession of a belt I am sure they would’ve carried on as if Terry didn’t exist.
Much like the Sky commentary team and assorted pundits. Professionally – if you can call them professional – the lack of recognition for a genuine world champion is disgraceful.
If Crolla had come away with the spoils at the weekend, all the subsequent rhetoric would have been about Mikey Garcia and a jaunt over to Vegas.
Now he remains beltless, the post-fight briefing to the press was all about how he might be willing to step in with Terry if I am prepared to pay him a million quid.
Market values don’t generally go up so sharply following bad defeats, so it will be interesting to see if he commands such a fee should he go in with say Ricky Burns, as was suggested.
Crolla might win popularity contests in Manchester, but Terry wins fights and that is what it is all about at the end of the day.