The International Boxing Federation have informed WBN that no request has been made by Gennady Golovkin to defend his middleweight title against Vanes Martirosyan.
A debate regarding the Cinco de Mayo fight (confirmed on Wednesday) was opened up by mandatory challenger Sergey Derevyanchenko’s representative Lou DiBella, who protested that the Ukrainian should be granted his chance next instead of the Armenian.
Despite meetings to iron out the situation, Derevyanchenko and DiBella remain unhappy and rumors have begun to spread that Golovkin could be stripped of the IBF title.
As things currently stand, this is not the case until an exception is received by the IBF from ‘GGG’ and his promoter Tom Loeffler.
“Golovkin has the right to ask for an exception. He hasn’t yet,” the IBF’s Jeanette Salazar exclusively told World Boxing News.
“When and if Golovkin does make a request, the IBF Board will determine whether it will be granted or not and what conditions if any apply,” she added.
It’s not thought Golovkin is in immediate danger of losing his red belt, although a planned rematch with Canelo in September could mean Derevyanchenko would face a further wait.
Unless Golovkin can make some sort of guarantee to the IBF, the time may come soon when the Kazakh is forced to make a big decision about his title or a lucrative return with Canelo.
Phil Jay is Editor of World Boxing News. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay
Below is the official release and ticket information for May 5th:
Undefeated World Middleweight Champion and boxing superhero GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN is saving Cinco De Mayo for boxing fans!
Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs), from Karaganda, Kazakhstan, boxing’s longest-reigning world champion, returns to the ring, Saturday, May 5, against two-time world title challenger VANES “THE NIGHTMARE ” MARTIROSYAN (36-3-1, 21 KOs), from Glendale, Calif.
The fight will headline an exciting world championship card which will take place, under the stars, at StubHub Center, in Carson, Calif. It’s the first time Golovkin has fought in Southern California in over two years.
Golovkin has proved himself to be a sterling gate attraction in his previous three fights in the Southland, selling out The Fabulous Forum twice, in 2016 and 2015, and setting the all time attendance record for boxing at StubHub Center in 2014.
Golovkin vs. Martirosyan will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing beginning at 11 p.m. ET/PT. Not only will this mark Golovkin’s first non-pay-per-view fight since 2016, if successful, it will also be his 20th consecutive and record-tying middleweight title defense.
Golovkin and Martirosyan boast a combined record of 73-3-2 (54 KOs) — a winning percentage of 94% with close to 3/4 of those victories coming by way of knockout.
Golovkin had originally been scheduled to defend his WBC, WBA, IBF and IBO middleweight titles on May 5 in a rematch against Saul “Canelo “Alvarez, in the biggest and most-anticipated event on the 2018 boxing calendar. But that fight was canceled when Alvarez withdrew after twice testing positive for the banned substance Clenbuterol
Promoted by GGG promotions, in association with Don King Productions, and sponsored by Tecate, Chivas Regal, Jordan and Hublot, tickets to the Golovkin vs. Martirosyan world championship event go on sale Today! Wednesday, April 18, at 1 p.m. ET / 10 a.m. PT.
Priced at $750, $500, $300, $200, $100 and $50, tickets may be purchased online at AXS.com, by phone at (888) 9AXS-TIX, or by visiting the StubHub Center box office.