By Luke Furman
The World Boxing Organization has ordered Gary Russell Jr. (24-0, 14 KOs), the WBO's mandatory challenger, and number 5 ranked Vasyl Lomachenko (1-1) to fight each other for the vacant WBO featherweight title. The two sides have 30 days to reach an agreement before the match heads to a purse bid.
Earlier this month, two-time Olympic gold medal winner Lomachenko faced Orlando Salido for the title. The belt became vacant after Salido was unable to make weight, and remained vacant after Salido upset Lomachenko with a twelve round decision win.
The WBO decided to give Lomachenko another shot to win the title, due to Salido's inability to make weight and the fact he weighed 147-pounds on the night of the fight.
It will be interesting to see if both sides are capable of reaching an agreement, since Lomachenko is promoted by Top Rank and Russell is handled by rival company Golden Boy Promotions.
Luke Furman covers boxing for bokser.org