By Steve Kim
While many are calling for an immediate rematch between Hassan N'dam and Ryota Murata, in the wake of the highly debated and controversial decision given to N'dam this past weekend in Tokyo, Japan for a version of the WBA title - the fact is that Rob Brant is the mandatory challenger.
Greg Cohen, who promotes Brant stated to BoxingScene.com - "I think it's presumptuous to say that they're mandating a rematch. The WBA, Rob Brant, Hassan N'Dam and Ryoto Murata already have a resolution that's been in place since around February 1st stating that the winner of N'Dam and Murata have to fight Rob Brant within 120 days. So Rob Brant is the mandatory challenger.
"If you read the quote from (WBA president) Gilberto Mendoza in the BoxingScene.com article, he is consistent in saying that he'd like to offer a rematch but Rob Brant is in line and they do have a mandatory challenger."
Brant has a record of 22-0 (15 KO's) and last fought on January 20th, halting Alex Hloros in one round.
The overwhelming majority of observers believed that Murata deserved to have his hands raised in victory, including Cohen.
''Now look, I think it was a terrible decision. Rob thought it was a terrible decision. I think everybody outside of the two judges who scored it for N'Dam pretty much agree it was a terrible decision, that Murata should've won and it would be nice to see Murata and N'Dam clean up some unfinished business,"stated Cohen.
"But they still have to go through Rob Brant but I'm not saying a deal can't be made but Rob's rights need to be respected and I think a resolution could be reached to satisfy all parties but we just can't assume a rematch is going to happen without Rob Brant consenting to it."
So would step-aside money and perhaps a slot on the N'Dam-Murata undercard satisfy Brant?
"I would say that those variables certainly go towards Rob's consent," said Cohen.
Steve Kim is the news editor for BoxingScene.com