Jay Harris is edging towards a shot at IBF flyweight champion Moruti Mthalane after the US-based sanctioning body ordered a final eliminator between the Welshman and Californian Ricardo Sandoval.

Swansea’s Harris (18-1, 9 KOs) fell short but impressed in a title tilt against heavy-handed WBC champion Julio Cesar Martinez in February 2020, losing on the cards after a valiant effort. He decisioned former British super-flyweight title challenger Marcel Braithwaite in his comeback contest last October.

The former European and Commonwealth champion must now face stiff-hitting Golden Boy Promotions fighter Sandoval (18-1, 13 KOs) who has halted his last five opponents, but is yet to mix it at championship level.

There is a limited time window for negotiation with this Friday (February 26) set as the deadline to agree Harris-Sandoval before it heads to purse bids.

Harris was delighted by his new route to a world championship. “Boom. Mandated for a final eliminator. Let’s get this done,” tweeted the Welshman upon hearing the news.

South African veteran Mthalane (39-2, 26 KOs) is undefeated in over 12 years since a loss to Nonito Donaire way back in November 2008.