By Keith Idec
The WBC announced Sunday that TGB Promotions has won a purse bid for its Anthony Dirrell-Callum Smith super middleweight title fight.
TGB Promotions – a Sherman Oaks, California, company that will promote the fight on behalf of Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions – won with a whopping bid of $1.6 million, presumably to keep the fight in the United States. England’s Smith (22-0, 17 KOs), the WBC’s No. 1 super middleweight contender, and the second-ranked Dirrell (30-1-1, 24 KOs), of Flint, Michigan, will fight for the unclaimed WBC 168-pound championship Badou Jack gave up last month.
The WBC did not announce how much money other promoters bid for the right to promote the Dirrell-Smith match. A date has not yet been set for the Smith-Dirrell match, either.
The 32-year-old Dirrell had hoped to land a rematch against Jack (20-1-3, 12 KOs), who beat him by majority decision in their 12-rounder to take the WBC super middleweight title nearly two years ago in Chicago.
Sweden’s Jack can no longer make the 168-pound limit, however, thus he relinquished the WBC title after battling England’s James DeGale (23-1-1, 14 KOs), the IBF super middleweight champion, to a hard-fought draw in their unification fight January 14 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Jack’s next fight will take place in the light heavyweight division.
Dirrell most recently demolished Hungary’s Norbert Nemesapati (25-5, 18 KOs), who lost by technical knockout to Dirrell following six one-sided rounds January 13 in Hialeah, Florida.
In Smith’s most recent fight, the 26-year-old Liverpool native stopped fellow Brit Luke Blackledge (22-3-2, 7 KOs) in the 10th round December 10 in Manchester, England.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.