Mexico's Arce calls off Perez tilt with shoulder injury

Updated: January 23, 2008, 7:33 PM ET
By Dan Rafael | ESPN.com

Junior bantamweight star Jorge Arce of Mexico suffered a shoulder injury training on Wednesday, forcing him to withdraw from his next fight, co-promoter Fernando Beltran told ESPN.com.

Arce, a former junior flyweight champion and one of Mexico's most popular fighters, was scheduled to face Jonathan Perez in a 12-rounder in Leon, Mexico on Feb. 9. It was part of a Top Rank pay-per-view card headlined by junior middleweight Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. (34-0-1, 27 KOs) against Jose Celaya (31-3, 16 KOs).

"Arce is hurt. He will not be in the show," Beltran said. "The doctor told him he can fight two weeks after the show, but that he needs to rest. He's not seriously injured, but he needs to rest for two weeks. Neither of us want him to hurt his shoulder more, so we had to pull him off the show."

In Arce's place, junior flyweight titlist Edgar Sosa (30-5, 16 KOs) will make his fourth defense against Jesus Iribe (10-4-1, 6 KOs), who holds a 2006 victory against Juan Esquer. Esquer gave recognized junior flyweight champion Ivan Calderon a competitive fight in December.

Also on the pay-per-view: middleweight Jose Luis Zertuche (19-4-2, 14 KOs) faces Marco Antonio Rubio (38-4-1, 34 KOs) and junior featherweight prospect Bernabe Concepcion (23-1-1, 13 KOs) of the Philippines faces Juan Ruiz (21-4, 6 KOs).

Celaya, who has won five in a row, is another step up for Chavez, the son of the Mexican icon.

In his last fight, Chavez faced his most notable opponent to date and knocked out Ray Sanchez in December.

"He's good, but I have a lot of advantages -- my experience, speed and skills," Celaya said. "[Fight fans] are going to be surprised when they see me. My plan is to dominate this fight, win, and move on the bigger things."

Chavez is used to hearing that kind of pre-fight talk from his opponents.

"I never take a fight lightly," Chavez said. "I will train hard and let's see what happens on Feb 9."

Dan Rafael is ESPN.com's boxing writer.