WBO gives Mayweather deadline to decide championship status

Nissi Icasiano
If Mayweather fails to meet WBO’s terms, Bradley will be promoted as the organization’s official champion after claiming the interim title with a win over Vargas

FRIDAY. Floyd Mayweather Jr. has until Friday, July 3 to decide whether or not he intends to remain as the championship committee’s welterweight titleholder. File Photo by Emmanuel Dunand/AFP

MANILA, Philippines – The World Boxing Organization (WBO) is giving Floyd Mayweather Jr. until Friday, July 3, to decide whether or not he intends to remain as the championship committee’s welterweight titleholder.

Mayweather (48-0, 26 knockouts) captured the WBO welterweight championship when he defeated Manny Pacquiao via unanimous decision last May.

After outpointing Pacquiao in a match at Las Vegas’ MGM Grand Garden Arena, the undefeated American pugilist said that it was time to give other boxers an opportunity to vie for world titles. He announced his intention to vacate all his belts.

But upon hearing the WBO’s decision to stake its welterweight title in the bout between Timothy Bradley Jr. and Jessie Vargas over the weekend, Mayweather called in his lawyers to reach out and inform the organization that he needed more time to make his verdict on vacating the belt.

WBO responded by handing the 38-year-old native of Grand Rapids, Michigan, an ultimatum to notify the title-sanctioning body of what he wants to do.

“So we have given Mayweather Jr. until July 3 to meet the requirements that he cannot be the champion of another sanctioning body in another division, and also he has to pay the sanctioning fee $200,000,” WBO president Francisco “Paco” Valcarcel told BoxingScene.com.

Aside from the WBO welterweight strap, Mayweather also owns World Boxing Association and World Boxing Council’s top prizes at welterweight and light middleweight.

To stay as WBO’s 147-pound kingpin, Mayweather has to relinquish his possession of both WBA and WBC light middleweight titles.

“Our rule is clear, and it says that he cannot be our champion at 147 pounds and be a champion in another division,” Valcarcel said.

If Mayweather fails to meet WBO’s terms, Bradley will be promoted as the organization’s official champion as he claimed the interim title with a unanimous decision victory over Vargas.

Meanwhile, Mayweather is scheduled to return to action in September against a yet-to-be-identified opponent. – Rappler.com

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