Lewis Paulin’s Scottish featherweight title showdown with Stephen Tiffney was thrown into turmoil last night after the latter failed to make the championship weight.
Hype had been building since the all-Edinburgh bout was announced by MTK Scotland in October with both boxers set to put their undefeated records on the line at the Paisley Lagoon Leisure Centre tonight.
However, there was an unexpected twist at yesterday’s weigh-in in Glasgow as Tiffney (8-0) exceeded the featherweight championship limit by 2lbs, tipping the scales at 9 stone 2lbs compared to Paulin (10-0) who came in at 8 stone 13lbs.
With the fight in jeopardy and Paulin’s promoter Alex Morrison seemingly unwilling to compromise, an agreement was finally reached late last night that will see the contest go ahead as planned, although only former Meadowbank amateur Paulin can be crowned Scottish champion should he prevail in the ten-round duel.
Should 29-year-old Tiffney triumph, he will simply add another win to his record.
“I’m really angry as you would expect so it’s a bit of a joke to be honest,” Paulin, 27, said. “I’ve spent months training for this and to be let down at the last minute is really disappointing. I can’t understand how he hasn’t made the weight. We’ve both known about for the fight for so long. We’ve done everything their team has asked and it’s always been in their favour and then he’s the one that doesn’t make the weight.
“I don’t buy the whole thing. I’m the one that has had to drop down to his weight category. I think it was deliberate. I think he’s happy just to sacrifice the Scottish title, have an advantage in size and then carry on to fight for one of the major titles. Hopefully I’m wrong but that’s the way it looks.
“This just spurs me on more. I’ll become Scottish champion and move up the rankings and be in the mix for major titles. He maybe really is struggling at the weight. Alex [Morrison] told me not to fight and just cancel the whole thing. But there’s a lot more to than that. I have my family and friends coming through for it, I can’t just change all their plans 24 hours beforehand. It’s Christmas time after all and people have spent a lot of money. There are buses booked so I’d need to cover all that as well. I’m just going to make sure I win and that will be that.”
Tiffney was unavailable for comment last night but he did take to social media to explain his side of things. He said: “Big mistake made at today’s weigh-in and I hold my hands up. For people to think it was in any way intentional and think I didn’t try and make the weight is crazy. Funny to see how quick people are to slate you when something goes wrong.”
Elsewhere, welterweight Lewis Benson is chasing his tenth victory tonight when he boxes Nicaragua’s Marcos Mojica.