Pakistan's top boxing talent, Muhammad Waseem, was dealt a major blow on Thursday as he was denied a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to fight for the World Boxing Council (WBC) flyweight title and also stripped of his weight category's silver title due to non-payment of fees, believed to be some $700,000.

The pugilist, looking visibly glum, broke the news himself in a new video. "I had a WBC flyweight world title shot but that opportunity is gone now as we could not gather the fee needed.

"I have also been stripped of my WBC silver flyweight title and demoted in the rankings. I was the number one contender but I am now fourth on the list.

"This is a very sad thing as I could not accomplish my career goal of winning a WBC world title for Pakistan.

"No one sponsored or supported me here."

Waseem made history in July 2016 when he defeated Philippines' Jether Oliva to become the first Pakistani to hold any championship belt at a major boxing sanctioning body.

He subsequently trained at Floyd Mayweather's gym in the US, while his impressive performances in the ring saw him quickly become the number one contender for the flyweight category's world title, currently held by Japan's Daigo Higa.

The world title bout was scheduled to take place sometime in 2018 but a perennial lack of finances have deprived the Quetta-born of the opportunity.

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