A ‘VICIOUS’ row erupted on the eve of tonight’s much-awaited clash at the Winter Gardens between Blackpool boxing champion Brian Rose and former world title holder Vivian Harris.
Rose’s opponent, the American-based fighter from Guyana nicknamed ‘Vicious’, complained vociferously when the British light-middleweight title holder stepped on the scales and was a pound over the 11-stone mark.
At one stage, after heated exchanges involving both camps and promoter Steve Wood, it looked as though the contest could be at risk, though efforts were made to smooth things over and hopes were high that the fight would take place as scheduled.
Certainly, the spat has added to the intensity of tonight’s bill-topper
Rose weighed in at 11st 1lb, while Harris was half a pound under 11-stone.
Harris, former WBA world welterweight champion, fumed: “The contract we signed was for 154 pounds. I am coming up in weight to fight at that. “I used to fight at 140 and struggled to make that weight, but I did it and I showed respect.
“They (the Rose camp) need to show respect to the promoter, the people, everyone. “You don’t go off the scale, not make the weight and then drink something (as Rose did).”
Harris dismissed the argument that the extra pound was irrelevant as it was a non-title fight.
He responded: “It doesn’t matter – that is not the contract I signed.
“I have had many fights – world title fights, non-title fights, 10-rounders.
“If people say I have to come in at 142 pounds, I come in at 142, and if I don’t I work it off. I go away, get every ounce off and come back and make the weight.”
Rose’s trainer Bobby Rimmer laid the blame at his own door.
Rimmer said: “When I weighed Brian on our own scales this morning he was 11-stone, but when we got her he is a pound up. I don’t know what happened.
“It’s a little hiccup but it is solely my fault, not Brian’s. Brian does what I tell him to do.
“We thought the weight was right but my scales were wrong and I need to get them recalibrated.”
Rimmer said there was no danger of the fight being called off.
“The fight will be okay. There are people (with Harris) who are not boxing people and are just butting in. It’s got nothing to do with them. I think it will all be sorted out.”