LARYEA LEAVES HUGHES IN LIMBO

Joseph Laryea (17-9, 13KO) has been forced to withdraw from tomorrow’s International Masters title fight with Danny ‘Maxi’ Hughes (11-1-1, 1KO) after injuring his left arm in a bathroom accident, says promoter David Coldwell. The African, who challenged for Ricky Burns’ WBO world title in 2011, was on his way to Sheffield but fell and sustained the injury at the airport toilets in-between changing flights. Hughes, who is partly Welsh but originally from Rossington in Doncaster, understands that Laryea’s team are still locked in internal discussions about whether he is definitely not able to fight. He explained, “I spoke to Dave half an hour ago, he says Laryea is here with his trainer in the gym office and the injury is 100% legitimate. Apparently, his promoter and manager is horrible, he’s been on the phone to them over here and with Laryea getting injured and not getting a fight, obviously he’s not getting money either. Apparently, he’s going to get beaten or punished when he gets back to Ghana. “Laryea is saying he’ll fight with one arm because I don’t want to get beat up when I get back home. It looks that his trainer won’t put him in, his trainer won’t accept it. Laryea’s happy but his trainer won’t take it.” Hughes had given up work without pay and relocated to South Wales for the last five weeks of his training camp so that he could be trained by Gary Lockett. The 24-year-old, who is due to go on holiday with his girlfriend Sophie on Saturday, had hoped that his purse would recover his lost wages but Hughes may now miss out on being paid altogether. He said, “I saved all my money and used my money to support myself to live and train in Wales. It’s come to the end, I was looking forward to the fight and I needed to get paid from that to replace the money which I’d spent. I’m down on my wages now and it’s looking like I won’t be fighting. “If I don’t end up fighting tomorrow, I’m going to lose five week wages. That’s even more upsetting, losing all that money. I’ve put a lot of work in with Gary in Wales and a big opportunity has been took away from me.” The super-featherweight contest was due to co-headline Coldwell Boxing’s ‘Unleashed’ show at the Sheffield Ice Arena but now the matchmakers are left to find a last minute replacement for Hughes. There were attempts to get former British champion Paul Appleby and Michael Mooney, who Hughes has previously beaten, but both have fallen through. Hughes has even been desperately phoning potential opponents himself to persuade them to take the fight. The southpaw only found out about Laryea’s withdrawal an hour before he was due to weigh-in, leaving him mentally and physically stuck in limbo. He explained, “Psychologically and mentally, I’m fried. I’m losing hope and I’ve half accepted it in my head that there’s nothing going to be happening for me tomorrow. “Mentally, I don’t know what’s happening. I don’t know whether to think, ‘sod it’ and call it a day, accept that nothing is going to happen or do I hold back for tomorrow. People around me are saying keep focused but until you’re in that position… it’s a difficult position to be in. “We’re having some food now but I’m going to have to go steady on it because I don’t know if I might have to fight and hold my weight. I can’t fully enjoy my meal tonight and I’ve got to restrict myself on what I eat. It’s an all round shame.”

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