Upon today’s announcement that Valuev-Chagaev II has been canceled, Team Ruiz is demanding an immediate purse bid in order for Valuev-Ruiz III to be held by August 30 for the World Boxing Association heavyweight title. Two-time WBA champion John “The Quietman” Ruiz (43-8-1, 29 KOs) lost to Valuev last August 30th in Berlin by 12-round split decision. Team Ruiz petitioned the WBA for a variety of reasons regarding the conduct of the fight and in response to the appeal, the WBA declared Ruiz as its mandatory challenger for the winner of the Valuev-Chagaev title fight scheduled for this weekend in Finland.
“Enough is enough,” Ruiz said. “Chageav has never fulfilled his obligation to fight mandatory defenses. German promoters have gotten their way with the WBA in the past, but the WBA has to do the right thing – strip him of his title and drop him from the ratings. I knew something would happen because he is either injured or it’s something else where he doesn’t fight. That’s why I’ve been working so hard at the gym in Las Vegas to get ready. I’m glad that this situation will finally be settled and I’ll be fighting for the title.”
Team Ruiz believes the consistent rumor that Chagaev has Hepatitis B was the reason he failed his medical exam, noting that since the rumors began, Chagaev hasn’t fought outside of his home-base in Germany.
“We believe Chageav’s ‘Champion in Recess’ is now completely meaningless,” Ruiz’ advisor Anthony Cardinale explained. “He last fought for the WBA title in April of 2007 and he owed Valuev a mandatory when he got hurt last year. Now this has occurred and he should be stripped of that title and removed from its rankings. If the rumors are true, where can he fight outside of Germany, and how was he even allowed to fight there? Valuev hasn’t defended his title since August 30, 2008 and John is the mandatory challenger.
“The WBA ruled that, no excuses, Chageav had to engage in this fight or he would be stripped of his ‘Champion In Recess’ title. The WBA is legally obligated to follow its ruling in this regard. Without this ‘Champion In Recess’ nonsense, Valuev is obligated by WBA rules to defend the title against the mandatory challenger – John is the WBA mandatory challenger — before August 30, 2009, which is why we’re asking the WBA to set-up an immediate purse bid so the fight can occur in a timely fashion.”