Errol Spence Jr. withdraws from Manny Pacquiao fight with torn retina; Yordenis Ugas steps in to face 'Pac-Man'
Welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. has been forced to withdraw from his upcoming championship superfight with Manny Pacquiao with a torn retina, promoters PBC have confirmed.
In the PBC statement, Spence said: “I’m very disappointed that I won’t be able to fight Manny Pacquiao on August 21.
“I was excited about the fight and the event. Unfortunately, the doctors found a tear in my left eye and said I needed to get surgery on it ASAP and that there was no way I could fight with my eye in that condition. I’d like to apologize to everyone. You know I’ll be back as soon back soon. We’ve come back from worse.’’
Pacquiao said in the statement: “First and foremost, I ask everyone to join me in praying for a full and complete recovery for Errol Spence Jr. Thank God his physical examination discovered his eye condition before he suffered any further damage. I have agreed to fight Yordenis Ugas on August 21 for the WBA welterweight super championship. The proper way and the only way to win a world title is inside the ring.”
The 35-year-old Ugás (26-4, 12 KOs) trains in Las Vegas and owns victories over then undefeated fighters Jamal James, Omar Figueroa Jr. and Bryant Perrella, plus veteran contenders Thomas Dulorme and Ray Robinson.
“It’s an honor to fight the great multiple division world champion, Manny Pacquiao, as I am more than ready to take on this challenge,’’ Ugas said.
“I have a tremendous amount of respect for Pacquiao, but I am coming to win this fight. I’ve been in camp working hard with my coach Ismael Salas and I know together we will come up with a masterful game plan to combat anything Manny will bring to the ring. I wish Errol Spence Jr. a speedy recovery and I want to ensure the fans that I will be at my best for this fight.
“Everyone knows my story about how I came to America to follow my dreams of becoming a world champion, and now it’s time to stamp my legacy with a victory, as one of the best Cuban fighters to ever put on a pair of gloves. I love my country and I want to dedicate this fight to all the men and women who are fighting for freedom.’’