WBO: Crawford To Keep Welterweight Title For Tszyu vs Fundora Winner

The WBO has said Terence Crawford will keep his welterweight title when he takes on the winner of Tim Tszyu vs Sebastian Fundora at junior middleweight. 

Crawford is the WBO Super Welterweight Champion, making him mandatory for the winner of Tszyu vs. Fundora. Tszyu and Fundora face off on March 30 for the WBO and WBC Junior Middleweight Belts. By keeping the WBO belt, Crawford can pursue his ambition of becoming a three-weight undisputed champion by having an alternative at 147 if he loses. 

“Terence Crawford is a three-division WBO World Champion and a two-division undisputed world champion. Consequently, he was conferred the privileges and rights per his status as the WBO Super Champion. And let me clarify that such status is not a title but rather a designation. Therefore, Crawford is the sole, exclusive, and only Welterweight Champion in the WBO.

“Based on Crawford’s merits as a three-division WBO World Champion and two-division undisputed champion, we will allow him to enter the ring and participate as WBO welterweight champion against the winner of Tszyu vs Fundora,” WBC President Paco Valcarcel said

The current top contender in the WBO rankings at 147 is Giovani Santillan. The American is undefeated with a 32-0 record. 17 of his wins have come by knockout. Santillan’s last bout was a knockout win over Alexis Rocha. If Crawford loses to Tszyu or Fundora, the WBO could call the mandatory at 147. 

Tszyu’s team is confident of winning against Fundora. His manager, Glen Jennings, is already focused on getting Crawford. The WBO Junior Middleweight Champion faces a tough task. Fundora was a last-minute opponent after Keith Thurman pulled out with a bicep injury. Fundora is a tricky southpaw, standing at six feet five inches. 

He has a 20-1-1 record. His only defeat came against Brian Mendoza in his last fight, when he was stopped in the seventh round. Before the knockout, Fundora was dominating the fight. The Australian will look to do the same, as Tszyu has a 24-0 record with 17 stoppages. If he comes through, Tszyu’s team will start talking with Crawford immediately. 

“So immediately after that fight, when everything becomes official, we’ll go straight into negotiations to see what we can get done. Of course, Tim will also have a WBC mandatory, which clouds the situation somewhat. But obviously, when Crawford comes into play, the entire boxing world sits up and takes notice,” Jennings stated

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