Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez is to move up to light-heavyweight to fight WBA champion Dmitry Bivol in Las Vegas on May 7.
Alvarez’s most recent bout saw him defeat Caleb Plant in November to become the first undisputed world super-middleweight champion.
The 31-year-old Mexican (57-1-2, 30 KOs) added the IBF belt to the WBA, WBC, WBO crowns he had claimed via victories over British pair Callum Smith and Billy Joe Saunders.
Alvarez’s clash with Russian Bivol, also 31, is the first contest in a multi-fight deal with Matchroom and DAZN, with the second set for September.
Bivol (19-0, 11 KOs) has held the WBA light-heavyweight title since 2016, defending it 10 times.
Alvarez said in a statement from Matchroom: “I am very happy with this fight against Dmitry Bivol.
“It is another great challenge for me and my career – especially as I go up in weight and face an exceptional light-heavyweight champion like Bivol.
“I am also very excited that we have this fight slated for Cinco De Mayo Weekend for all the fans to enjoy. We will be ready, like we always are.”
Bivol said: “I always only wanted to fight the best. I believe that the rest of my goals will begin materialise on May 7.”
Promoter Eddie Hearn said: “It is an absolutely honour to announce a multi fight promotional deal with the pound-for-pound king Canelo Alvarez.
“Canelo transcends boxing and is the biggest star in the sport and we look forward to promoting some historic nights in 2022 live on DAZN PPV.
“First up, Saul takes on yet another champion, this time in the shape of fearsome undefeated WBA Light-Heavyweight king Dmitry Bivol. Fans can expect a thrilling all-action match up and we look forward the pair coming face to face at a press conference in San Diego next Wednesday.”