The World Boxing Association (WBA) Championships Committee has ordered the start of negotiations between Jorge Linares (42-3, 27 KOs) and the British Luke Campbell (17-1, 14 KOs); the title in dispute is the Lightweight Championship.
Linares, current WBA champion at 135 pounds, got his belt last September 2016, when he defeated British Anthony Crolla. Since then, he has not had a mandatory fight. According to article 11 of the WBA Rules, a champion must face his mandatory opponent in a period of 9 months, time that expired on June 23rd, 2017.
Campbell got the opportunity to fight for a world title after defeating Colombian Darleys Perez by TKO in the ninth round last April.
Both teams were duly notified and have 30 days, starting July 21st, to reach an agreement or, otherwise, the fight will be called for purse bids.
Golden Boy Promotions recently advised BoxingScene.com that Linares would likely return in September, tentatively on the 23rd, but that the opponent would not be Campbell.
IN OTHER NEWS: Super middleweights Mike Gavronski and Tony Hirsch will face off in the main event at Battle at the Boat 112 at the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, Wash. on Saturday, Sept. 9.
Gavronski brings a record of 23-2-1 with 14 KOs into the 10-round bout, while Hirsch sports a record of 22-6-2 with 9 knockouts.
The main event will be one of six fights on the card, which will also feature a semi-main event between Andres Reyes (7-2-1, 2 KOs) and Andre Keys (3-1-0, KO).
Tickets are available through the EQC box office and all Ticketmaster Outlets. Preliminary bouts will start at 7 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m.
Gavronski has been razor sharp in his last three bouts with wins over previously undefeated Australian champion Jake Carr, knockout artist Thomas Awimbono and Quinton Rankin, who he bested by unanimous decision in his most recent fight on June 3.
“Mike made his professional debut here in 2010 and has fought at the Emerald Queen 11 times,” promoter Brian Halquist said. “He’s never looked better than he has in his last three fights. He has really shaped up his game and is on the verge of cracking the top 20 world rankings.”
Gavronski, a native of Tacoma, is 10-1 in his 11 career fights at the Emerald Queen Casino with his only setback coming in 2015 against Dashon Johnson in a bout for the vacant WBA-NABA United States super middleweight championship.
Since that defeat, Gavronski has gone a perfect 3-0.
Hirsch brings a nine-fight unbeaten streak into the main event, last losing on Aug. 17, 2013.