Welcome to At The Fights – Main Event’s Ben Damon’s weekly look at the best in boxing from Australia and abroad.
BIG NEWS FOR TSZYU
Tim Tszyu’s path to a world title shot has just become much clearer with the IBF set to demand their belt-holder Jermell Charlo move towards a fight with mandatory challenger, Russian Bakhram Murtazaliev.
The development reduces the prospect of Charlo immediately rematching WBO champion Brian Castaño, who would in turn receive pressure from that organisation to defend his belt against Tszyu, who is their number one challenger.
Charlo and Castaño have the same advisor – Al Haymon – who would prefer a rematch so as to guarantee all the super welterweight silverware stays under his control but the IBF is believed to be adamant Murtazaliev deserves his shot, after an extended stint as their number one challenger.
Charlo could vacate the IBF belt and fight Castaño however he appeared underwhelmed by the prospect of an immediate rematch after the pair’s epic weekend clash, which Castaño appeared to have won before a controversial draw was announced.
With plenty to play out in coming days Tszyu’s promoters at No Limit have developed a strategy to have the 26-year-old ready for his title shot at the end of the year, should things fall into place.
Tszyu will proceed with a fight against a former world champion in Australia in September and American Tony Harrison is now the preferred option as he’s considered the toughest of the short-listed options, ahead of Liam Smith and Jack Culcay.
Harrison is the only man with an official win against Jermell Charlo and appears the perfect measure of where Tszyu fits in the division, ahead of the proposed title bout with Castaño or a future clash against Charlo.
Should Tszyu beat the extremely credible Harrison No Limit would want to move straight onto the Argentinian Castaño in a November or December title fight which, if held in Australia, would be our most significant event since Jeff Horn defeated Manny Pacquiao.