Mauricio Lara re-match
It is now common knowledge that a rematch clause is in place for Leigh Wood (26-3, 16 KOs) to have a shot at regaining his WBA world featherweight title. The rematch would make sense as Wood had the ability to outbox Mauricio Lara (26-2-1, 19KOs) during many points of the fight up until the stoppage, landing some well-timed right hands. However, Lara’s power is without question a big problem for any contender in the featherweight division.
The Mexicans aggressive style and powerful shots saw the likes of Josh Warrington (31-2-1) and Emilio Sanchez (19-2, 12 KOs) in big trouble- Lara took Warrington to a place he had never been before with him previously been undefeated on a 30-0 winning streak. Then again it is also undeniable how game Wood is, particularly after hand picking the ‘bogey man’ of the division in a voluntary defence and his ability to get up from been knocked down early in the Conlan fight and carry on to produce an emphatic knockout in the 12th.
Therefore the Lara rematch is a fight he is likely to take, with the Brit captioning his latest Instagram post- ‘Congratulations to Lara enjoy your victory and I’ll see you again soon’.
The British featherweight electrified the Motorpoint arena in his hometown of Nottingham on Saturday night until the towel was thrown in by his corner, after he was knocked down in the 7th round. This meant that his WBA world featherweight title was now in the hands of the Mexican Mauricio Lara.
Although the fight was over, Leighs determination and courage had yet again been shown with him jumping to his feet just seconds after he was floored by the vicious left hook and by the look of disappointment given back to trainer Ben Davison when he realised the fight was over. With Wood been involved in Ring magazines fight of the year against Michael Conlan (18-1, 9 KOs) last year and producing the rings knockout of the year within the same fight as well as voluntary fighting the most dangerous puncher in the division in Lara we are left wondering- what’s next for Leigh Wood?
Just before the Lara fight, Josh Warrington was seen with Wood in a clip on Matchroom’s Instagram discussing their potential clash. “We’ll get in on”- Wood told Warrington. Warrington also envisioned the fight by saying “a stadium fight away from Leeds would be absolutely fantastic”.
Wood has stated that one of his final goals in boxing is to fight in the Nottingham Forest ground and I believe the Warrington fight would be perfect for that, particularly with the football rivalries attached to the fight- Leeds United VS Nottingham Forest. Warrington has also captioned a photo with Wood at the Forest ground- ‘Potential stadium fight?’. Whether or not Wood decides to rematch Lara first, the fight is a likely route in the near future. The fight is very marketable and sought after, having all the ingredients for a stadium sell out. The all-British clash is now on the cards which is great for boxing fans- and before the pair decide to hang up their gloves it is a fight that both the featherweight division and British boxing fans need.
The second fight with Michael Conlan is also greatly desired by boxing fans, particularly in Britain and Ireland. After the first fight was deemed fight of the year officially by The Ring magazine and unofficially by many boxing fans and pundits it is undeniable that the second would also be fireworks, especially with previously undefeated Conlan now wanting to redeem his loss. Conlan tweeted after the fight back in 2022- ‘definitely want a rematch lol’.
Although Conlan dominated the first half of the fight and knocked Wood down early in a roaring Motorpoint arena, Wood triumphantly came back knocking Conlan through the ropes in the final round of the fight. As the first fight was so exciting and left fans on the edge of their seat, the second fight is very much sought after and can allow for any doubts and debates to be cleared up surrounding the clash.