By Miguel Rivera
The teams behind Mexican boxers Leo Santa Cruz and Abner Mares are working hard to reach an agreement for a fall rematch, likely to take place in Los Angeles, California.
It was reported weeks ago that Santa Cruz vs. Mares II would take place on September 9th at the Staples Center, but nothing has been announced or finalized.
The World Boxing Association has ordered the two of them to fight, in order to merge their two featherweight titles. Santa Cruz is the "super" champion at 126--pounds, while Mares is the "regular" champion.
Because their negotiations are dragging on, the WBA has given both sides until July 11, 2017 to reach an agreement to carry out the rematch or they fill be forced to take part in a mandatory purse bid on July 21. This information was communicated to them by the WBA's Championships Committee.
These two Mexican gladiators first collided in 2015 in what was one of the best contests of the year. That battle went to the scorecards and the judges handed down a majority decision in favor of Santa Cruz, who that day became "super" featherweight champion under the WBA.
Later, Santa Cruz defended his belt against former champion Kiko Martínez of Spain and retained the crown with a technical knockout. He would go on to lose his belt by majority decision against top Irish star Carl Frampton. The close and interesting nature of the contest drew enough interest to have a rematch, which took place this past January, and saw Santa Cruz regain the title with a majority decision.
For his part, Mares got the "regular" championship of the WBA last December, when he defeated tough Argentine slugger Jesus Cuellar by split decision. With that victory, he secured the right to be measured again Santa Cruz in a rematch - which the sanctioning body is pushing to stage in order to eliminate one of their world titles.