On Tuesday, the World Boxing Council (WBC) board of governors had accepted Vasiliy Lomachenko petition to fight for the recently vacated WBC lightweight title.
He’ll face mandatory challenger Luke Campbell with the location of the fight set to be in the United Kingdom, per a report to ESPN.
Lomachenko, who is holding the World Boxing Organization (WBO) and International Boxing Federation (IBF) world titles currently at lightweight, makes the leap over all ranked WBC contenders to get a title shot at Campbell.
To be the best you have to beat the best! I’m ready to fight anyone, no one’s getting in the way of me becoming world champion! #AndTheNew
— Luke Campbell MBE (@luke11campbell) May 7, 2019
Mikey Garcia, who the WBC named as the Emeritus champion in April, reserves his right to fight for the lightweight title if he ever comes back to the weight class.
Garcia was initially ordered to face Campbell, but instead moved up to welterweight to challenge IBF world champion Errol Spence in March.
WBC Lightweight Status
Luke Campbell will face Vasiliy Lomachenko with the vacant WBC lightweight championship on the line.
— World Boxing Council (@WBCBoxing) May 7, 2019
With everyone else in the division, a tournament will be setup to determine the next mandatory challenger of the division with the following fights planned so far:
Silver champion Zaur Abdullaev will take on Devin Haney,while Teofimo Lopez will battle Javier Fortuna. The winners of these two matches will then face off to determine the next mandatory contender of the division.
Abdullaev, Haney and Lopez were all slated to get in line to fight for the vacant WBC title but instead will have to go through this tournament, which could likely play out until the end of 2020.
One person among many who isn’t thrilled about this decision by the WBC is Matchroom Boxing Promoter Eddie Hearn.
The promoter in a tweet from Fox Sports Boxing Insider Mike Coppinger, stated:
“What’s the point in aligning yourselves with an organization, working your way up the rankings, paying fees, only to be overlooked by a champion from another governing body? It should be contested by two highest-ranked available fighters.”
“What’s the point in aligning yourselves with an organization, working your way up the rankings, paying fees, only to be overlooked by a champion from another governing body? It should be contested by two highest-ranked available fighters.” Top two available: Campbell and Haney
— Mike Coppinger (@MikeCoppinger) May 7, 2019
Hearn whose stable of boxers include the top two challengers Luke Campbell and Devin Haney, had waited out Garcia’s choice at lightweight for what was likely to setup a match between Campbell and the recently signed Haney for the vacant title.
Instead, Campbell has a date with arguably one of the best pound for pound boxers not only in the division, but in boxing.
The controversial move of placing Lomachenko ahead of everyone does come off as the WBC just making up the rules as they go along or taking the advice of boxing social media in regards to pound for pound lists that appeared this week following the win of Canelo Alvarez over Daniel Jacobs this past weekend.