Skip to content
Home » Exclusive: IBF update on Usyk and Joshua vs Dubois status

Exclusive: IBF update on Usyk and Joshua vs Dubois status

The International Boxing Federation has updated World Boxing News on the current status of Oleksandr Usyk and the interim heavyweight title.

Boxing’s top division awaits a ruling that could split the championships less than three weeks after they were put back together for the first time in 25 years. Usyk defeated Tyson Fury to claim all four versions of the crown on May 18, with a mandatory defense looming on the horizon.

Usyk’s promoter, Alexander Krassyuk, told WBN in the aftermath of the victory that the Pound for Pound King would ask for an exception to keep the red belt until after a rematch with Fury on December 21. Usyk handed in his request to IBF chiefs, who initially decided to put the IBF interim title on the line for the number one contender, Filip Hrgovic, last Saturday night.

However, Hrgovic lost, leaving the new mandatory challenger to be his conqueror Daniel Dubois. But with the Briton not waiting long for his opportunity as long as Hrgovic was, the consensus now is that the IBF will allow Usyk to face Dubois next year, keeping his undisputed status in the process.

Dubois is then free to defend the IBF interim championship against Anthony Joshua, with the winner facing their old foe Usyk in a rematch in the first few months of 2025.

WBN can now reveal that the IBF is still in a consideration phase on both counts.

“A decision hasn’t been made yet on Usyk’s exception request, and we have not received a request for Dubois vs. AJ,” an IBF spokesperson exclusively told World Boxing News.

If the fans and media could choose the outcome, undoubtedly, the answer would be to allow Usyk to keep the undisputed title for the Fury rematch. In anything, Fury deserves the opportunity he got in the initial bout for the return leg. There’s a firm belief that Fury will retire win or lose against Usyk before Christmas, with the opportunity to bow out as undisputed champion a no-brainer. The same goes for Usyk, who overcame so much adversity to unify at cruiserweight and heavyweight fully. If he lost a belt on a technicality, the IBF would come in for plenty of criticism.

However, the IBF gets applauded far more than critiqued for sticking so stringently to its rules. However, this time around, common sense should prevail, especially after Hrgovic lost his spot to Dubois.

Read all articles and exclusive interviews by Phil Jay. Learn more about the author, experienced boxing writer, and World Boxing News Editor since 2010. Follow on Twitter @PhilJWBN.