Tim Bradley WBO champion status on hold due to Jessie Vargas appeal

Phil Jay 29/07/2015

The results of an appeal by Jessie Vargas over the ending of their recent clash has meant Timothy Bradley is being forced to wait for the return of his old WBO welterweight title.

Bradley previously took the belt from Manny Pacquiao, albeit controversially in 2012, before losing it to the same fighter two years later. ‘Desert Storm’ had thought that his points victory over Vargas on June 27 would mean the 147 pound championship would be back in his possession – that was until an initial objection by Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Mayweather wanted more time to consider keeping a grip on the belt he ripped from Pacquiao when they met on May 2 and was granted a stay by the WBO until early July 5 meaning Bradley fought Vargas for only the interim version.

That date then came and went leaving Bradley believing that he was the finally new champion until Vargas then launched his own protest against the ending of the fight, believing referee Pat Russell had stopped Bradley in the twelfth round. Even further confusion followed at the end of the StubHub Center contest as Russell stated that this wasn’t the case and Bradley was awarded the victory via a unanimous decision.

Until the conclusion of the appeal process, Bradley faces an anxious wait to see if he will either be crowned full title holder once again or possibly be pitted against Vargas in a return for the vacant belt.

“Timothy Bradley, Jr. is WBO welterweight champion until and unless the California State Athletic Commission resolves otherwise,” General Secretary Jose Izquierdo exclusively told World Boxing News.

“Should the Commission exercise its prerogative and reverse the result of the June 27, 2015 bout (a complaint has been filed on behalf of Vargas) to a ‘no contest’ or any other result, the WBO will abide by this and resolve accordingly.”

That means although Bradley is currently the WBO champion in all but name, the status would never have existed should the result is ruled a no-contest. Therefore, Bradley will have to rematch Vargas to regain the title which he would never have won in the first place.

If as expected the result is upheld, Bradley would finally be officially the WBO welterweight champion again.