The World Boxing Organization (WBO) removed one of Manny Pacquiao’s concerns when it announced Sunday that Miguel Cotto will defend his welterweight crown in a catch weight of 145 lbs — and not 147 lbs — against the Filipino boxing icon.
WBO president Francisco “Paco” Valcarcel told the Puerto Rican newspaper El Nuevo Dia that (the fight) it’s going to be for the (WBO) title” and that everything will come to a “happy ending” for both parties.
Pacquiao lawyer Franklin Gacal said he had spoken with Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum also yesterday, assuring him that the fight will be at 145 lbs and that Cotto’s WBO throne will be on the line in the super showdown penciled at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Cotto had insisted a few days back that if Pacquiao wants to go after the WBO crown, the fight will have to be at 147 lbs.
Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach said fighting Cotto in a non-title bout is almost without value.
Now that it appears that a major stumbling block has been cleared, next up for discussion would be the crucial choice of finding a new training camp for Pacquiao, who has been advised by the Harvard-educated lawyer to set up the first half of his training camp outside US territory owing to an IRS regulation called the Substantial Presence Test.
Arum, whose promotional outfit Top Rank is staging the megabuck fight, will embark on a huge promotional tour of four cities in September, kicking off with the lead event at Yankee Stadium in New York on Sept. 10.
The next stops will be in Cotto’s hometown of Caguas in Puerto Rico on Sept. 12, AT&T Park in San Francisco on Sept. 13 and Beverly Hills in Los Angeles on Sept. 14.
Then, the two will head to their respective training camps with Cotto going to Tampa, Florida, and Pacquiao in the Bahamas, Canada, Mexico or the Philippines.
Source: http://www.mb.com.ph/articles/214025/cotto-s-title-line-vs-pacquiao (August 2, 2009)