What was supposed to be a done deal now appears to be gone with the wind.
The proposed show¬down between World Boxing Association (WBA) junior featherweight (122 pounds) champion Scott Quigg and challenger Nonito Donaire Jr., seemingly a lock for November 21, is back in limbo after the British champion recently announced that he was more interested in pursuing a showdown with International Boxing Federation (IBF) counterpart Carl ‘The Jackal’ Frampton.
Truth be told, Donaire was really nothing more than a contingency measure as Quigg has been pursuing Frampton for almost a year now. From a marketing standpoint, a showdown between Englishman Quigg and Irishman Frampton in England really makes more sense, err pounds. But when initial talks to bring Quigg and Frampton in the same ring failed to get off the blueprint stage, Donaire was tossed into the mix. Quigg expressed interest in the fight, especially after Donaire was viciously knocked out by Nicholas Walters in October 2014 in a battle for the WBA featherweight (126 pounds) crown.
Quigg apparently had a change of heart after Donaire started flaunting the deadly form that made him a regular four-time division world champion. Donaire (35-3, 23 knockouts) returned to the junior featherweight class and has since chalked up two straight bone-jarring knockout victories since losing to Walters. Quigg (31-0, 23 knockouts) is now telling everyone that he no longer plans to fight in 2015 and will just open 2016 with a unification showdown with Frampton. Donaire could only shake his head in disbelief, considering that he had agreed to all of Quigg’s terms.
Quigg, 26, was introduced to the world of boxing after his parents brought him to a Thai boxing gym to control his aggression. Quigg had previously flirted with football but he never made the cut for being too small. He ended up liking boxing so much that he later asked his head teacher to expel him so he could concentrate on hitting the sandbag.
After boxing in the amateur ranks for three years, Quigg turned professional in 2007 and was initially crowned interim WBA junior featherweight champ in 2012 after stopping Rendall Munroe in 6 rounds. He was later promoted to regular champion status and has since made 6 successful defenses, 4 by knockouts.
As things stand, Quigg will return to the negotiating table with Frampton while Donaire is back to being the back-up plan. Top Rank head honcho Bob Arum harbors no ill feelings and is plotting a December fight for Donaire against Mexico’s Cesar Juarez (17-3, 13 knockouts). Juarez, 24, has never been stopped in 20 fights and has won his last 4 fights. The Mexican is ranked No. 1 by the World Boxing Organization (WBO) in the junior featherweight division with Donaire coming in at No. 2.
Arum, however, made it clear that Donaire is still bent on pursuing a fight with Quigg next year. You can say that Donaire is also fixed on the same agenda. As the old boxing maxim goes, “you can run, but you can’t hide.”
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