As quickly as Patrick Teixeira was named its new junior middleweight champion, the World Boxing Organization (WBO) has already assigned a mandatory challenger.
The newly crowned 154-pound titlist from Brazil—who was upgraded from the interim title status he claimed in a 12-round win over Carlos Adames on Nov. 30 in Las Vegas—will be ordered to next face Argentina’s Brian Castaño (16-0-1, 12KOs), with the two camps to begin negotiations in the coming days.
“We sanctioned the fight with the condition that the winner face the mandatory challenger as designated by the committee,” Francisco ‘Paco’ Valcarcel, president of the WBO confirmed during the ratings portion of the sanctioning body’s annual convention Thursday morning in Tokyo, Japan.
The appointment of Castaño was requested by internationally renowned Sean Gibbons, representing the former titlist on behalf of Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) and Tom Brown’s TGB Promotions. The request was honored by Valcarcel, with the committee voting unanimously to name the Argentinean as the number one challenger for Brazil’s Teixeira (31-1, 22KOs).
“We have a lot of dates on real TV with Fox Sports and Showtime,” noted Gibbons, both confident of winning the rights to the fight and also poking fun at Teixeira’s promoter, Golden Boy Promotions who is one year into a five-year deal with over-the-top (OTT) media service DAZN.
The ruling by the WBO puts PBC and Golden Boy at the same negotiating table, with the two sides having reached deals in the past but coming amidst a long-standing acrimonious relationship after the two entities parted ways in 2014. Still, a good fight is always a proper formula for sound business to be conducted, with the Castaño camp already receptive to such a bout.
“It is great news that Brian has been named mandatory challenger,” Sebastian Contursi, Castaño’s longtime manager told BoxingScene.com upon hearing the ruling.
Castaño is a former secondary titleholder with the World Boxing Association (WBA), having vacated the belt this past summer after scrapping plans for a mandatory title defense rematch versus France’s Michel Soro. The two fought in 2017, with Castaño winning a decision but his team having to take Soro’s handlers to court in order to get paid.
The lack of financial assurances or sufficient drug testing was enough to prompt Castaño’s team to bail from history threatening to repeat itself, thus opting to give up the belt. He’s since fought in November, scoring a one-sided injury stoppage win over Wale Omotoso in a bout with a WBO regional title at stake. It was enough to keep his place high among the sanctioning body’s rankings, and sliding into the number-one position following Teixeira’s recent interim title win.
Teixeira has since been upgraded to full titlist after Mexico’s Jaime Munguia vacated in favor of a move to the middleweight division. The sport’s politics won’t stand in the way of Castaño moving towards a deserved title shot.
“Teixeira showed last Saturday that he is a great fighter,” Contursi noted of the 30-year old Brazilian boxer. “So, it would be a great fight indeed.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox