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WBC clarifies world title picture

At its 58th Convention, which has been conducted virtually due to the Covid-19 Pandemic, the WBC sought to clarify its world title situation in all 17 weight divisions at its Mandatories Meeting.

On a Zoom conference call, President Mauricio Sulaiman was joined by some of the most important players in boxing who assembled to petition, haggle and clarify the positions of their fighters including industry heavyweights like Carl Moretti (Top Rank), Roberto Diaz (Golden Boy Promotions), Eric Bottjer (Matchroom), Francis Warren (Queensberry Promotions) and Tom Loeffler (GGG/K2/360 Promotions).

The title picture in all 17 weight classes was decided as follows:

Heavyweight

Matchroom has requested for the August 22 fight between interim champion Dillian Whyte and Alexander Povetkin, authorisation from the WBC for the winner to be awarded the Diamond belt. This proposal has been authorised.

If Dillian Whyte wins, he will be ratified as the official challenger to face the winner of Tyson Fury vs Deontay Wilder III.

Fury was confirmed to make a voluntary defence against Deontay Wilder, which is scheduled for December 19.

The winner of Fury vs Wilder III is required to fight Whyte if he wins his match against Povetkin.

Queensberry Promotions received clarification from the WBC after expressing their concern that February was the deadline for the mandatory fight, it was clarified that one day after the fight between Fury vs Wilder III the period of free negotiations will begin.

Silver champion Daniel Dubois is defending his crown against Joe Joyce on October 24.

Cruiserweight

Cruiserweight champion Ilunga Makabu must make two mandatory defences, having won a vacant title. There are two final elimination bouts between No.1 Thabiso Mchunu vs No.3 Olanrewaju Durodola and No.4 Alexei Papin vs No.5 Ruslan Fayfer. Makabu was granted a voluntary defence.

Light-heavyweight

Light-heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev will defend his title against Fanlong Meng on September 25 in Russia. Jean Pascal is the mandatory challenger.

Super-middleweight

Super-middleweight champion David Benavidez defends against Roamer Angulo on Saturday, the winner will face mandatory challenger Avni Yildirim; winner vs Avni Yildirim will be allowed a voluntary defence before facing diamond champion Callum Smith.

Sampson Lewkowicz expressed his concern about the situation of Yildrim’s entry to the USA. It was confirmed that WBC will attend to each case separately and they are asked to anticipate the confirmation of the date of the fight and attend the situation of entering the USA with the necessary anticipation.

The Silver champion will defend in October and asks to be kept informed of any situation in case of Yildirim or Smith problems In ordered to be considered.

Middleweight

Franchise champion Saúl Álvarez will not fight on September 12. He is training, and Golden Boy is working on confirming a date, place and opponent. Middleweight champion Jermall Charlo will defend against Sergiy Derevyanchenko on September 26.

Super-welterweight

Super-welterweight champion Jermell Charlo defends against Jeison Rosario on September 26 in a unification bout. The promoter informed that the winner is obliged to make the mandatory defence of the IBF title, to which the WBC confirmed that it has agreements of respect and reciprocity with the IBF to respect the mandatory obligations.

Welterweight

Welterweight champion Errol Spence defends against Danny Garcia in a mandatory fight in November.

Shawn Porter will contest the silver championship against Sebastian Formella on August 22.

Super-lightweight

Super-lightweight champion José Ramírez faces Viktor Postol in a mandatory fight on August 29.

Lightweight

Franchise lightweight champion Vasiliy Lomachenko will clash with IBF champion Teofimo Lopez on October 17 in Las Vegas in a unification bout. The board of governors voted in favour of accepting Top Rank’s request that, if Teofimo Lopez wins the match, he be recognized as a franchise champion.

WBC Champion Devin Haney will have a voluntary defence.

Ryan ‘Kingry’ Garcia will face Luke Campbell for the interim title.

Javier Fortuna will notify the WBC of his plans regarding their fight on August 28 and will have the unconditional support of the WBC.

Eliminatory fights will be held in Russia for the Silver title.

Super-featherweight

Super-featherweight champion Miguel Berchelt will defend his title against official challenger Oscar Valdez on a date to be determined. Top Rank has until the end of August to confirm the deal, otherwise a purse offer will be ordered. A tournament will determine the next mandatory.

Featherweight

Featherweight champion Gary Russell Jr. does not have a mandatory challenger. No.2 Tugstsogt Nyambayar vs No.5 Eduardo Ramírez will be the final eliminator on September 19 in Connecticut. It was taken into consideration that this fight is signed and that challenger No.1 was not available as he had plans to fight for another body.

Super-bantamweight

Super-bantamweight champion Rey Vargas fractured his leg and will be out of circulation for months, therefore, he will be named ‘champion in recess’. The governing board accepted the following fights:

Luis Nery faces Aaron Alameda for the vacant title and the winner will be forced to have two mandatories. There will be two final eliminatory bouts and the winners will be mandatory.

Carlos Castro vs Christopher Diaz first mandatory and Daniel Román vs Juan Carlos Payano for the second.

Bantamweight

Bantamweight champion Nordine Ouabaali defends against Nonito Donaire in December in his mandatory defence.

Super-flyweight

Super-flyweight champion Juan Francisco Estrada has a voluntary defence. Srisaket Sor Rungvisai is the mandatory challenger. Thailand’s travel restrictions situation will be verified.

Flyweight

Flyweight champion Julio César Martínez was fighting official challenger McWilliams Arroyo, but withdrew due to illness. The promoters will try to reschedule the match.

Light-flyweight

Light-flyweight Kenshiro Teraji is awaiting a fight date. A final elimination fight will be ordered soon after analysing the situation of the fighters, their countries and restrictions.

Strawweight

Strawweight champion Wanheng Menayothin could fight a voluntary defence in September. A final elimination bout will be ordered reviewing the situation.