Frank Warren didn’t have to flip over too many couch cushions to secure the funding for his latest purse bid haul.
The Hall of Fame promoter’s Queensberry Promotions submitted $63,000 as the lone bidder during Tuesday’s hearing for the Cody Crowley Ekow Essuman IBF welterweight title eliminator. The ordered fight between the pair of unbeaten contenders will determine the mandatory title challenger for the sanctioning body’s welterweight title.
That is, of course, if the fight sees the light of day.
Crowley (22-0, 9KOs) is ranked number-three in the most recent IBF welterweight ratings. The best-case scenario for the 30-year-old southpaw from Las Vegas by way of Ontario, Canada would be a $37,800 haul from a 60-percent split on the bid as the higher-ranked contender. Essuman (19-0, 7KOs) is currently number-four.
A 50-50 split would leave each boxer with a $31,500 payday purely from the purse bid amount.
Essuman was previously vocal about his intention to move forward with the fight when it was ordered last month. The 34-year-old boxer—who was born in Botswana and moved with his family to the U.K. at age eleven—has held the British welterweight title since July 2021 and has made four successful defenses. He has not fought since a twelve-round, majority decision over Chris Kongo on January 21 in Manchester, England.
Crowley last fought in a grueling majority decision win over Abel Ramos on March 25 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Their bout was a sanctioned WBC title eliminator, which has left Crowley as the number-one contender to that title.
However, the sanctioning body has also approved a Yordenis Ugas-Mario Barrios interim WBC welterweight title fight. The bout was given the greenlight as undisputed champion Terence Crawford (40-0, 31KOs) continues to work out terms for a yet-to-be-scheduled—or agreed-upon—rematch versus Errol Spence (28-1, 22KOs), whom he stopped in the ninth round of their July 29 clash to fully unify all the major welterweight titles.
Crowley is more likely to face the Ugas-Barrios winner than he is due to land a shot at Crawford as the WBC mandatory. Similarly, the winner of the ordered Crowley-Essuman bout would realistically become the mandatory for current interim IBF titlist Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis (31-0, 28KOs) in anticipation of the Philly native eventually being upgraded to full titleholder.
Should either Crowley or Essuman bail from the ordered fight, they will be dropped below the top ten in the IBF rankings per Rule 9(c) of the IBF guidelines covering purse bids for ordered title fights and eliminators.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox