Andrew Moloney now has a clear target for his 2023 campaign.

The former secondary WBA junior bantamweight titlist was among the most interested observers for Juan Francisco Estrada’s eventual twelve-round, majority decision win over Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez. The win saw ‘El Gallo’ defend his lineal 115-pound championship for the fifth time and also regain the vacant WBC title, for which Moloney is a win away from becoming mandatory challenger.

“I really feel like it is my destiny to fight Juan Francisco Estrada,” Moloney told “Before turning pro, Estrada was someone that I watched a lot. He was one of my favorite fighters, so I am very familiar with his style.”

Estrada-Gonzalez III was approved as a vacant title fight by the WBC during its annual convention this past November 9 in Mexico City. The sanctioning body also ordered in that space, a final title eliminator between Australia’s Moloney (25-2, 16KOs; 1NC) and Mexico’s Pedro Guevara (39-3-1, 22KOs), a former WBC junior flyweight titlist and streaking 115-pound contender who has won his last nine starts.

Moloney is riding a four-fight win streak since going 0-2 with one No-Contest in his own trilogy with Joshua Franco (18-1-2, 8KOs), now the WBA junior bantamweight titlist who will face WBO champ Kazuto Ioka in a unification clash on New Year’s Eve in Tokyo.

Estrada will be afforded a voluntary defense as his next mandatory contender is established. His repeat win over Gonzalez—going up 2-1 in their incredible series—makes him the most significant, and possibly lucrative, target in the division, not to mention having already led a Hall-of-Fame worthy career.

That’s all the motivation needed by Moloney to chase down the king within his next two fights.

“To become a legend, you must beat a legend and that is exactly what I plan on doing,” insisted Moloney. “I will now continue working hard and preparing for an eliminator fight to become his mandatory challenger. I couldn’t be more excited for what’s to come in 2023.”

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for Twitter: @JakeNDaBox