Felix Alvarado is back at the negotiating table.

BoxingScene.com has confirmed that the former IBF junior flyweight titlist is currently in talks with Dave Apolinario, per an order from the IBF for a proposed flyweight title eliminator. The bout was summoned after both parties accepted an invitation from the sanctioning body to enter talks for a fight to determine the mandatory challenger for reigning flyweight titlist Sunny Edwards (19-0, 4KOs), who enters a voluntary defense on June 10 in London.

“Be advised that # 3 rated, Felix Alvarado and # 5 rated Dave Apolinario are the 2 highest ranked available contenders in the IBF Flyweight division and have indicated in writing, a willingness to participate in this eliminator,” IBF Championship Committee chairman Carlos Ortiz informed the promoters for both boxers in a letter obtained by Boxing Scene. “In an effort to determine who the mandatory challenger will be, the IBF is ordering an elimination bout between Felix Alvarado and Dave Apolinario for the number 1 position.

“The winner will be #1 and the mandatory challenger. Negotiations should be concluded by May 5, 2023.

Alvarado is with M&R Boxing and represented in talks by promoter Laura Ching and manager William Ramirez. Apolinario fights under the Sanman Promotions banner, headed by Jim Claude Manangquil in the Philippines.

The order comes two weeks after Nicaragua’s Alvarado (38-3, 33KOs) awaited a response from Japan’s Seigo Yuri Akui (18-2-1, 11KOs) whose team declined an invitation to enter talks.

Alvarado was previously due to face countryman and fellow former titlist Cristofer Rosales in a title eliminator. The all-Nicaragua battle of former titlists went to a purse bid hearing, won by M&R Boxing who submitted $2,500 as the lone bidder. Rosales, through Matchroom Boxing, declined to move forward with the fight but has yet to announce his next move.

Meanwhile, Alvarado is moving forward with the process in a second bid to become a two-division titlist.

He came up well short in his most recent effort, a clear points loss to Edwards last November 11 in Sheffield, England. The setback snapped a 20-fight win streak dating back to 2014. Alvarado claimed the IBF junior flyweight title during that time in an October 2018 knockout win over Randy Petalcorin on the road in Pasay City, Philippines. He vacated the belt last year to compete at flyweight in the absence of an available unification bout.

Apolinario (18-0, 13KOs)—should he go through with the fight—will take a significant step up in competition.

The 24-year-old southpaw from General Santos City claimed the IBO flyweight title in a first-round knockout of Gideon Buthelezi last July 29 in East London, South Africa, his lone career road trip to date. The win was part of a current seven-fight knockout streak for Apolinario, including a second-round stoppage of sub .500 Fengky Rohi on February 11 in his hometown.

In the event either fighter declines to move forward with the fight, he will be dropped out of the IBF flyweight top ten for a period of at least six months, per IBF Rule 9.C. Neither boxer can enter talks for another bout during the current negotiation period.

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox