IBO welterweight champion Chris Van Heerden has explained his hasty departure from now former manager Gary Hyde as the decision came down to the South African’s desire to keep his status as a world title holder.
Holding what is considered the fifth most recognised of all the belts in circulation, Van Heerden spoke of his immense pride at possessing the title also held by such current champions as Gennady Golovkin and Wladimir Klitschko.
“When I signed with Gary he promised me the world, but in the end could not secure me a fight to defend my IBO belt,” Van Heerden told World Boxing News.
“The IBO said they are going strip me if I don’t get a fight soon so I begged Gary to get me a defence but he couldn’t because of the situation with the title in America.
“I am not willing to give up my belt just like that, so I asked Gary to release me from contract and he had no problem to do so.
“Gary was a real gentleman in the whole thing and really tried his best for both of us. In the end it seems the American side of things could not set-up my defence.
“Golden Gloves already has a date for me in 2014 and now the world will see “TheHeat” fight after too long away,” he added.
In the past few years, the IBO have been less thought of Stateside once superstars Floyd Mayweather Jr. (2006) and Manny Pacquiao (2009) no longer held the title. Elsewhere in the world, especially in Van Heerden’s home country, the belt is still looked upon as a genuine world crown and has an abundance of title holder in it’s ranks at the present time.
Van Heerden, 26, can now focusi his efforts on the February event arranged by new promoter Rodney Berman at Emperor’s Palace, although his dream of breaking into the elite at 147 remains on hold for the immediate future.
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