Deontay Wilder voluntary approved for January, mandatory relaxed

World Boxing Council Heavyweight belt

WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder will make the third defence of his belt on January 16, according to the World Boxing Council.

The WBC debated the voluntary positions of all its title holders at the ongoing 53rd Annual Convention in Kunming, China this week and confirmed the following:

“No. 1 ranked mandatory challenger Alexander Povetkin of Russia, who also holds the WBC Silver title, is scheduled to fight Mariusz Wach on Wednesday in Kazan, Russia.

“A representative for Povetkin told the assembly today that Povetkin will not be ready for his mandatory title challenge in January, when it’s due. But if he wins tonight, he will be ready in April or May.

“If Povetkin loses tonight, the WBC will address the mandatory situation. A voluntary title defense was approved for Wilder on January 16.”

Meanwhile, cruiserweight title holder Grigory Drozd has been informed of his next challenger.

“Drozd is scheduled to make his mandatory title defense against No. 1 ranked Ilunga Makabu of Congo in March.”

In the lower weight classes, the positions of minimumweight and light-flyweight were also clarified.

Light flyweight world champion: Pedro Guevara (Mexico) – “Guevara is currently in a voluntary stage.

“The WBC approved a final eliminator to determine the mandatory challenger between No. 1 ranked Jonathan Inguito Taconing of the Philippines, who also holds the Oriental and Pacific Boxing Federation title, and No. 4 ranked Juan Hernandez of Mexico.

Minimumweight world champion: Wanheng Menayothin (Thailand) –  “Menayothin is scheduled to make a voluntary defense against No. 9 ranked Young Kil Bae of South Korea on November 24 in Chonburi, Thailand, and is scheduled to fight again next February.

“The WBC approved a final eliminator to determine the mandatory challenger between No. 1 ranked Denver Cuello of the Philippines and No. 2 ranked Saul Juarez of Mexico on December 5. If the winner of the eliminator is not ready to fight again in February, the winner of Menayothin-Young will be allowed a voluntary defense.