x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Pacquiao could fight Clottey

Manny Pacquiao will face Ghanaian hardman Joshua Clottey if his showdown with Floyd Mayweather Jnr cannot be resurrected.

Manny Pacquiao holds the championship belt at the end of his WBO welterweight boxing title fight against Miguel Cotto, of Puerto Rico, last November.
Manny Pacquiao holds the championship belt at the end of his WBO welterweight boxing title fight against Miguel Cotto, of Puerto Rico, last November.

Manny Pacquiao will face Ghanaian hardman Joshua Clottey if his showdown with Floyd Mayweather Jnr cannot be resurrected. Negotiations between the Filipino favourite and pound-for-pound rival Mayweather appear to have broken down irretrievably this week after a mediator was unable to help them reach an agreement for the March 13 Las Vegas super-fight. The bitter row stems from Mayweather's insistence upon extra-stringent drug testing - namely the enforcement of blood sampling close to the fight - with WBO welterweight champion Pacquiao launching legal action and all parties seemingly conceding the bout is now off. The arguing continued last night following Pacquiao promoter Bob Arum's claims the fight is dead in the water with mediator Judge Daniel Weinstein and Mayweather himself having their say. In the meantime, Arum has been busy arranging alternative opposition, with former welterweight champion Clottey set to step in. Early suggestions were that new WBA light-middleweight champion Yuri Foreman was the likely stand-in but now Clottey - like Foreman, an Arum Top Rank fighter - appears to be the favourite. A statement reportedly on the Top Rank Facebook Fan Page said: "Sorry Floyd...you had numerous chances to make the fight of the century happen. We are no longer waiting around for you! "Top Rank is pleased to announce that Manny Pacquiao will defend his World Boxing Organisation welterweight championship title in a bout with Joshua Clottey, Saturday March 13, 2010! It's on!" No official announcement has been made, however, and there remains every chance Pacquiao and Mayweather could get over their disagreement to salvage a fight which would be certain to break box office records. * PA Sport