Connect with us

IBF Now Won’t Force Oleksandr Usyk To Fight Hrgovic Next

IBF Now Won't Force Oleksandr Usyk To Fight Hrgovic Next

Boxing News

IBF Now Won’t Force Oleksandr Usyk To Fight Hrgovic Next

Mark Robinson -Matchroom Boxing

IBF Now Won’t Force Oleksandr Usyk To Fight Hrgovic Next

The confusing “alphabet” soup of world boxing organizations is nothing new. Nor is there desire to contradict their own rulings and decisions, as is the case for unified heavyweight champ Oleksandr Usyk of Ukraine. He now won’t have to fight unbeaten #1 contender, Croatian Filip Hrgovic next to keep the IBF version of the heavyweight crown.

The International Boxing Federation made the declaration of their switch in a letter sent to all parties Monday that our insider Dan Rafael obtained,

“On November 12, 2022, the IBF ordered Champion Oleksandr Usyk to commence negotiations with IBF Mandatory challenger Filip Hrgovic who became the IBF Heavyweight Mandatory contender on August 20, 2022, by winning an IBF Elimination bout against Zhilei Zhang,” IBF president Daryl Peoples said in the letter. “On November 14, 2022, the WBA notified the IBF that the WBA was next in the “rotation” system established by the IBF, WBA, WBC and WBO. The IBF agrees that the WBA is next in the rotation.

“Based on the information provided by the IBF, the IBF is rescinding the order for Oleksandr Usyk to commence negotiations with Filip Hrgovic for a Mandatory defense of the IBF Heavyweight title dated November 12, 2022.”

“The winner of the WBA Heavyweight Mandatory defense will be ordered to make a defense of the IBF Heavyweight title within one hundred eighty (180) days of the WBA Mandatory defense.”

Usyk Doesn’t Want To Be Tied To Hrgovic Defense

It’s no secret that Usyk, 20-0, 13 KOs, wants an undisputed title fight with WBC heavyweight champ Tyson Fury to be next and with all four world titles (including the WBA and WBO) to be at stake. Further, Fury’s British promoter Frank Warren is reportedly already negotiating with Middle Eastern countries about Usyk-Fury to be fought there in the summer of this year.

Usyk defeated Anthony Joshua in their rematch, once again by convincing decision, in August of last year in Saudi Arabia. And, that has set into motion the battle with the fellow unbeaten Fury, which would be the biggest stakes heavyweight title bout in nearly 20 years.

As for the IBF declaring that the World Boxing Association has the next mandatory challenger, the fighter in line is England’s Daniel Dubois. Dubois, who is also promoted by Warren/Queensberry Promotions, won the WBA secondary belt with a KO of American Trevor Bryan last June. He then defended that lesser version of the world title that Usyk holds on December 3rd. That’s, when Dubois overcame a knee injury and three knockdowns in the first round to still score a TKO himself over South Africa’s Kevin Lerena.

It’s been confirmed that Dubois tore his ACL in the Lerena bout and will be sidelined from training, much less fighting, for at least six months or more

So, likely, the WBA will step out of the way and let Usyk-Joshua happen, while Dubois rehabs, etc.

Now, as for what happens after the undisputed bout and whether the WBA wants Dubois to get the fight or whether the IBF jumps back in to mandate that Hrgovic be next? That remains to be seen.

Continue Reading

A veteran broadcaster of over 25 years, T.J. has been a fight fan longer than that! He’s the host of the “Big Fight Weekend” podcast and will go “toe to toe” with anyone who thinks that Marvin Hagler beat Sugar Ray Leonard or that Tyson, Lennox Lewis or Deontay Wilder could have beaten Ali!

More in Boxing News

To Top