WBA To Reduce Number Of Boxing Titles Due To Financial Issues

World Boxing Association President Gilberto Mendoza said a new policy is starting in the fall.

The WBA – one of the sport’s four major sanctioning bodies – will enforce a reduction policy on its number of championships due to financial constraints, caused by its current structure, Mendoza told ESPN Knockout last week.

The WBA will prioritize its gold belts, which serves as a steppingstone in pursuit of a world title. An evaluation of each weight class will help define which titles will stay, Mendoza added.

“We will reduce titles permanently,” Mendoza said. “That flexibility we’ve had with championships, we will phase it out progressively. I will focus on the fact that maybe there won’t be multiple champions [in a single division] anymore. That’s something that fans have requested. … I feel that we provide more opportunities with multiple titles. However, I understand that fans are very important.”

“… I’m saying this with my feet on the ground and after assessing financials, after assessing the situation and all the controversies,” he added. “Besides, this measure will also make things easier for the association, from a legal conflict standpoint. I’m not saying that I will keep a single champion, though, but that’s the way I’ll operate with most divisions.”

The WBA president said it’s a “difficult” plan, but is aiming to start it in October. He is unsure how long it will take.

The news comes after a WBA judge, Gloria Martinez Rizzo, is facing backlash on her scorecard in the Gabriel Maestre-Mykal Fox interim title bout, which leaned heavily in favor of Maestre – a Venezuelan boxer – despite Fox – a Black American boxer – outboxing his opponent. BoxingScene discovered the judge’s past racist tweets.

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