WBO Rejects Hearn Extension Request- Joshua Must Make Deal
As the build up was growing into Saturday night’s Undisputed Jr. Welterweight Title fight won by Scotland’s Josh Taylor in Las Vegas and the “Gypsy King” Tyson Fury being there to make his third fight with Deontay Wilder official, another Brit and his promoter were being put on notice by the WBO to do a deal, or else.
The World Boxing Orginization officially ordered Unified Heavyweight Champ Anthony Joshua and Matchroom’s Eddie Hearn Saturday to do a deal with their #1 contender, Oleksandr Usyk, within the next 10 days. And if Joshua/Hearn can’t or won’t, then the fight will go to purse bid for anyone to be able to promote it.
RE: SHOW CAUSE NOTICE – WBO HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION ANTHONY JOSHUAhttps://t.co/gcOnKmFYLI
— WBO (@WorldBoxingOrg) May 22, 2021
In the email letter sent to Hearn and to Usyk’s manager/promoter, Alex Krassyuk of K2 Ukraine, WBO chairman Luis Batista Salas addressed Hearn repeatedly delaying making the mandatory fight (including trying to disregard being given 48 hours to make the fight or else earlier last week), and set the deadlines into motion,
“In compliance with our order on Friday, May 21, 2021, Mr. Eddie Hearn filed email correspondence requesting an extension until Monday, May 24, 2021, at 9:00 (EST) to discuss the subject matter and other related affairs with Anthony Joshua. Whereas Team Usyk’s legal counsel, Mr. Patrick English, Esq., filed an email correspondence objecting to Mr. Hearn’s request and arguing that the foregoing is unreasonable and that Usyk is entitled to enforce his rights as mandatory challenger and consequently, Mr. Joshua shall proceed with his mandatory or vacate the title.
Wherefore, having exchanged numerous internal communications with Team Joshua, having granted Team Joshua multiple extensions, having reviewed all relevant communications between Team Joshua/Team Usyk, having examined the parties arguments and positions regarding the subject matter, and having considered that sufficient time has elapsed on the matter before this Committee, and pursuant with our WBO Rules and Regulations of World Championship Contests and their enforcement in these matters, it is hereby ruled as follows:
“The extension request is hereby DENIED.”
In light of the foregoing, the parties are hereby granted 10 days upon issuance of this notice to negotiate and reach an agreement for the WBO Heavyweight Mandatory Championship Contest between Josua/Usyk, or a purse bid ceremony will be called immediately per WBO Rules and Regulations of World Championship Contests.”
The main significance here his two-fold: 1. Usyk, the former Undisputed Cruiserweight champ, has been the WBO’s mandatory for over a year waiting for a title fight with Joshua. This, while Joshua fought and stopped the IBF #1 Kubrat Pulev last December and now, 2. Hearn has wasted five months of 2021 for a Tyson Fury- Joshua fight that is not happening.
This gives the WBO leverage it needs over Joshua, if he doesn’t want to be stripped of their belt outside of the ring.
The belief is that Hearn and Krassyuk will be able to come to an agreement soon before the purse bid and the fight will likely be on August 14th or 21st. And, it will probably be in the U.K.
The WBO also spelled out what the “purse bid parameters” are (if it comes to that),
Furthermore, be advised that it is applicable in this case that if a purse bid is called, the split ratio shall be no greater than 80/20 in favor of Anthony Joshua. Such calculation is based upon the average purse of each fighter’s last three (3) bouts. See, Sections 11 through 14 (d)(4)(2) of the WBO Rules and Regulations. Nevertheless, bear in mind that the Committee reserves its right to issue any further rulings deemed necessary, helpful, or convenient to accomplish the purposes, policies, and intent of the WBO Rules and Regulations.
The minimum acceptable bid for the WBO Heavyweight Division is $1,000,000.00 (One Million Dollars). Any of the parties involved may request a purse bid procedure at any time during the negotiation process.
While Hearn and his fighter are smarting from having the mega-fight with Fury disintegrate this past week, they have bigger problems for a future fight with Fury or Deontay Wilder (if he wins in July) being “Undisputed,” without the WBO’s belt.