Recently crowned undisputed super-middleweight champion, Jermell Charlo (35-1-1, 19 KOs), has found himself in quite the situation.
Following his victory over Brian Carlos Castano last month, the WBO ordered Charlo to defend his strap against mandatory #1 WBO contender, Tim Tszyu (21-0-0, 15 KOs). However, boxing journalist Dan Rafael reminded the undisputed champion that in January, he had signed an agreement to face off with mandatory #1 IBF contender, Bakhram Murtazaliev (20-0-0. 15 KOs).
⬇️ This is a copy of the document Jermell Charlo signed that I have obtained promising the next fight to IBF mandatory challenger Bakhram Murtazaliev. For more details on the situation read my story: https://t.co/rvCLGW12NH #boxing pic.twitter.com/5OzjgTHsSd
— Dan Rafael (@DanRafael1) June 13, 2022
Since the news broke, Murtazaliev and his team have been pushing to make the fight happen, given that Murtazaliev has been Charlo’s IBF mandatory since defeating Jorge Fortea back in 2019.
The news leaves Charlo with a difficult choice to make. Attempt to defend his IBF title against Murtazaliev and put the highly anticipated Tszyu bout on the back burner. Or, vacate his IBF belt to take the rather more exciting and interesting bout against Tszyu next.
As both contenders are undefeated and at the very top of their promotion, both are due for a title shot. However, it seems fans and Charlo himself is much more interested in the Tszyu matchup than one with Murtazaliev.
Who do you want to see Jermell Charlo face next?
As a recent graduate from Lewis-Clark State College with a B.S. in History, Bjorn first fell in love with mixed martial arts when he watched UFC 196. As a contributor for MyMMANews, Bjorn matches his love for MMA, history, and writing.