WBC boss Jose Sulaiman released a statement explaining the WBC decision to have Saul Alvarez fight Matt Hatton for the 154 pound title vacated by Manny Pacquiao.

“One other news item that moved detractors, a few Mexicans among them, was the approval ofthe WBC to have the WBC super welterweight Silver Belt champion, Saul Álvarez, to fight against Matthew Hatton, the welterweight EBU champion, to fill the super welterweight title left vacant by Pacquiao, moved by the vested interests who even influence some of the media, when the WBC Board of Governors studied the special circumstances of seeing that while Álvarez was the #1, Alfredo Angulo #2, inactive for a long time after losing his visa and the USA court to recover it; #3, Paul Williams, whose last fight was a devastating K.O. commotion by Sergio Martínez; #4 Ryan Rhodes, being unavailable, and #5, Antonio Margarito, who has not yet received the medical approval to box again.

Under those circumstances, the WBC considered very seriously that the fight Alvarez-Hatton had already been signed for March 5; also the opportunity to fill immediately the vacant title left by Pacquiao, instead of waiting five or six months to fill it. Also considered was the rule of the WBC that states that any rated boxer can fight for the title at any of the upper or lower divisions, as it has been the case always with all the champions mentioned above, as also Muhammad Ali, winner of a gold medal in the light heavyweight division; Erik Morales, Marco Barrera, El Travieso Arce, Pacquiao himself, Emile Griffith, Alexis Argüello, and so many other fighters through the decades, which is absolutely no different than the action taken by the WBC in favor of two boxers with 79 victories and only 4 defeats combined, when one is the undefeated WBC Silver Belt champion, while the other had three years as champion of the British Empire, and three defenses of his present EBU-EUROPE title. The WBC feels firmer than ever with its decision, while feeling sorry for the fact that boxing today is an industry where its people fight hard to tarnish the image of their rivals, when it would much better when fighting harder for their own victories and success.

Mexico, Great Britain and Germany will have their champions’ opportunities to win WBC championships for their boxing fans and their own countries. The WBC is not a puppet, and will always struggle for justice, equality, and opportunities for all. So be it.”

For what it's worth…

He might've also explained, explicitly, not obliquely,  the reasoning behind having a guy who has never weighed more than 150 pounds, Alvarez, fight for the 154 pound title, against another guy who is a committed welterweight.

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