Oleksandr Usyk has now been ordered to fulfil his WBA mandatory title defence against Britain’s Daniel Dubois.
Following prolonged and ultimately futile talks for an undisputed bout with the division’s other champion, Tyson Fury, the Ukrainian made it clear that he would hold on to his unified titles by facing the number one challengers in a pre-agreed rotation.
First up is 25-year-old Dubois, who won the WBA Regular belt from Trevor Bryan in June of 2022 and defended it with a third round stoppage of Kevin Lerena in December.
The Brit picked up an injury in that bout stemming from a first round knockdown, and Usyk’s side were awaiting confirmation that he was fit to fight before beginning serious talks.
The World Boxing Association is now satisfied with Dubois’ fitness, and has ordered official negotiations to begin on April 4 and stretch no later than May 2. Should the parties fail to come to an agreement, the fight will go to purse bids.
“The WBA Championships Committee ordered the bout between Heavyweight Super Champion Oleksandr Usyk and Daniel Dubois. The organisation sent the communication to the parties today with a 30-day negotiation period starting on April 4 and ending on May 2.”
The WBA Championships Committee ordered the bout between Heavyweight Super Champion Oleksandr Usyk and Daniel Dubois.
The organization sent the communication to the parties today with a 30-day negotiation period starting on April 4 and ending on May 2 #UsykDubois
— WBA Boxing (@WBABoxing) April 3, 2023
The talks will see Usyk’s representatives work once again with UK promoter, Frank Warren, shortly after the Fury plans collapsed.
An initial sticking point for the undisputed bout was Fury demanding the lion’s share of the purse, but this time around it will be Usyk on the much higher percentage – albeit still significantly less money than he would’ve made facing ‘The Gypsy King.’
Should he come out on top, Usyk will then be met by the IBF’s Filip Hrgovic and WBO’s Joe Joyce to continue his duties as unified champion – that is if a deal with Fury isn’t revisited and the sanctioning bodies agree to it.