The bad blood between Josh Warrington and Mauricio Lara boiled over following the Mexican’s victory over Leigh Wood in Nottingham.
Lara produced a devastating left hook to send Wood to the deck in the seventh round of their contest. With trainer Ben Davison throwing the towel in to stop the fight, the Mexican is now WBA Featherweight Champion of the World.
His celebrations were paused to plant the seeds for what will potentially be his first defence. Warrington was ringside with a keen eye on the bout, and found himself in an exchange with Lara in which the Leeds’ man claims he was spat at.
🗣️ "Lara spat at me!" – @J_Warrington talks after #WoodLara 🤯 pic.twitter.com/WppeoCLaWy
— Matchroom Boxing (@MatchroomBoxing) February 18, 2023
“As soon as the fight’s been waved off, he looks over to me. He sees me. I actually thought he was looking over at times in between the fight. I got off my stole … the his head go forward, he spat on me. You know, I can have a little bit of pantomime – shouting and screaming – but somebody spitting on me? I’m not having it.”
“He seems to have got this thing over the last few years that since the second fight I disrespected his family, disrespected his dad and this, that, and the other. I didn’t even know that his dad was part of his training team. But it’s got to the stage now that he wants to finish my career – I’m more than happy to let him have that opportunity.”
Mauricio Lara and Josh Warrington go at it ringside #WoodLarapic.twitter.com/3DCyRKOwi4
— DAZN Boxing (@DAZNBoxing) February 18, 2023
Lara beat Warrington by ninth round stoppage back in 2021, and a rematch later in the year was frustratingly stopped short due to a cut around his eye from an accidental clash of heads.
There has been plenty of talk since the second fight from both camps. Despite the promise of a domestic stadium clash with Wood should he beat Lara, Warrington admitted that he wanted the Mexican to win so he could settle the score.
Now that he’s got his wish, the third fight is certainly on the table – especially with this added animosity.
Wood has a rematch clause with Lara that’s his to activate, but promoter Eddie Hearn hinted that a Warrington bout could happen beforehand and the contract term not be breached. Watch this space.