Chris Eubank Jr. activating a contracted rematch clause to face Liam Smith again, looks set to block a two-weight world title bid.
The WBO ordered Smith to challenge current champion Zhanibek Alimkhanuly. However, with the Kazakh one of the most avoided fighters on the planet, Eubank’s stipulation may have come at a good time for Smith.
WBO chiefs released information of its intentions to sanction Janibek vs Smith, giving less than three weeks for a deal to be struck.
Chris Eubank Jr step aside
That’s unlikely to be the case leaving the WBO to look at the next contender in line. The only way Smith could accept the WBO offer would be if Eubank stepped aside to allow it.
Given their history, bad blood, and Smith’s four-round stoppage of Eubank, the Brighton man clearing a path for “Beefy” doesn’t have favorable odds.
Despite the slight chance of it happening, the WBO still sent information to both fighters and their respective promoters.
Zhanibek Alimkhanuly vs. Liam Smith
Re: WBO Middleweight Mandatory Championship Contest – Negotiations.
Gentlemen, Please be advised that the parties herein are now ordered to commence negotiations for the subject matter. The camps are granted 20 days to reach an agreement.
Failure to reach an agreement within the time provided herein will result in this Committee ordering a purse bid. Proceedings will carry under WBO Regulations of World Championship Contests.
The minimum acceptable bid for the WBO Middleweight Division is $200,000.00 (Two Hundred Thousand Dollars). Any parties involved may request a purse bid ceremony during the negotiation process.
Lastly, this Committee reserves the right to issue further necessary, helpful, and convenient rulings to accomplish the purposes and policies.
Also, the intent of the WBO rules. Including, but not limited to, rendering all rulings necessary to serve the best interests of professional boxing, including those in the Middleweight Division.
Yours truly, Luis Batista Salas, Esq. Cc: Francisco Valcárcel, Esq./President Carl Moretti/Top Rank Jeremy Koegel, Esq./Top Rank John Wischhusen/Boxxer.
Furthermore, BOXXER is expected to reveal more shortly.