IBF Chairman Lindsey Tucker informed WBN of the organisation’s wish for Brook to defend his welterweight title against mandatory contender Errol Spence Jr. as early negotiations with Khan’s team begin.
Spence was promised his shot at the red strap months ago when Brook was given special dispensation to move up to middleweight to challenge Gennady Golovkin in September, a fight that ended with the Englishman suffering a first career defeat in five rounds.
As dangerous American Spence awaited possible news post-GGG bout of Brook vacating the championship for a permanent move to 154 pounds, ‘The Special One’ surprised all by announcing his intention to keep his world title and remain at 147.
That means Brook could now be looking for one final helping hand from the IBF in order to face Khan with his belt on the line, although promoter Eddie Hearn has hurdles in the way if that’s the road he wants to go down.
“I was not aware of a Kell Brook versus Amir Khan fight as I was hoping that Brook fight Spence next because he’s been waiting patiently for his turn,” Tucker exclusively told World Boxing News.
Asked directly if Brook would be stripped for fighting Khan next, Tucker answered: “I can’t confirm that, but May is a long way off. This is something that the IBF Board of Directors would end up deciding.
“The IBF Board of Directors would have to approve any fight for Kell Brook other than against Errol Spence.”
Brook, 30, has longed to face Khan for some time now and part of his reason for remaining at the lower weight could be comments made by his long-term rival in an exclusive WBN interview last October.
“I think I’d be more comfortable at 147,” Khan exclusively told World Boxing News at the time.
“With the money that’s going to be on the table, Brook should consider at least one more fight at 147. I think he’d want to take a fight with me. But if it happens, it would have to happen at 147, to be honest. That’s where I’m comfortable. I am interested in that fight so that’s where it would be. 147 would be better for me.”
On Brook potentially choosing a fight with Spence, Khan added: “I think Errol Spence is one of the reasons why Brook will move up to 154. He knows he’s going to have his hands full against Spence.”