WBO orders Jose Ramirez to defend against Jack Catterall next
By Charles Brun: The WBO has ordered 140 light welterweight champion Jose Ramirez to defend his title against mandatory challenger Jack Catterall in his next fight, and he now has 20 days to negotiate the contest.
This isn’t the fight that Ramirez (26-0, 17 KOs) wants, as he was hoping to face IBF/WBA champion Josh Taylor in the fall after he defends his against his IBF mandatory Apinun Khongsong on September 26.
The WBO is picking a horrible time in ordering Ramirez to defend against Catterall. However, the WBO let Ramirez defend against WBC mandatory Postol last Saturday with the condition that the winner would start negotiations with Catterall. Ramirez obviously knew this was coming, so he and his promoters at Top Rank likely aren’t shocked.
#1 WBO 140lb mandatory Catterall earned his right to challenge for the title by defeating Ohara Davies (21-2, 16 KOs) by a narrow 12 round unanimous decision in October 2018. It wasn’t an impressive performance from Catterall, but he got the job done and won the fight by a close decision.
Davies is the same fighter that Josh Taylor gleefully stopped in the 7th round in 2017. Taylor was laughing while he pounded Davies, and beat him in such an effortless manner that it looked almost unfair. Taylor was levels above Davies in terms of talent. The fact that Catterall struggled to defeat the same guy tells you all you need to know about him.
Catterall (25-0, 13 KOs) will get in the way of the highly anticipated Ramirez vs. Taylor undisputed fight unless a step aside deal can be made to get him out of the way. If there’s a way of giving the 27-year-old Catterall enough money for him to step aside, then the boxing world can see the Taylor-Ramirez fight.
If Catterall refuses to agree to a deal, then Ramirez will need to take care of him, and then ook to face Taylor in the first quarter of 2021. It’s too bad Catterall doesn’t have much of a fan base worldwide.
Right now, Ramirez needs a clear win to erase the terrible image the fans have of him winning a controversial 12 round majority decision over WBC mandatory Viktor Postol last Saturday night at ‘The Bubble’ in the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The 36-year-old Postol (31-3, 12 KOs) not only outboxed Ramirez, but he also staggered him in the 10th round with a right hand. Ramirez got the decision by the scores 116-112, 115-113, and 114-114. Boxing News 24 had Postol winning eight rounds to four, and it looked like a clear victory.
The only way one could see Ramirez winning the fight is if you only focused on his advantage in the power department, and ignored all the jabs that Postol was tagging him with. Postol’s jabs were like power punches. He looked incredibly with the boxing lesson he gave Ramirez.
One sure-fire way of getting rid of getting Catterall out of Ramirez’s hair would be to vacate his WBO 140lb title and let him go after the vacate strap against one of these top contenders: Liam Paro, Jose Zepeda, or Viktor Postol.
Unfortunately, Ramirez isn’t going to vacate his WBO belt because he wants to face Taylor for the undisputed light welterweight championship. Ramirez and Taylor have already established themselves as the top two fighters at 140.
Taylor and Ramirez really don’t need to have all four belts on the line to validate a fight between them. This is what they want, and there’s no chance that Ramirez will vacate the WBO belt to move forward to face Taylor. As such, boxing fans will have to wait a little while longer before Taylor battles Ramirez. It’s too bad Taylor hasn’t fought Catterall because he likely would have weeded him out years ago.
Regis Prograis might be better than Ramirez, and the same with Postol. But given that Ramirez is technically a two-belt holder, a fight between him and Taylor will have all the straps at stake when they square off.
Catterall has wins over these fine domestic level fighters:
- Tyrone McKenna
- Martin Gethin
- Tyrone Nurse
- Joe Hughes
- Timo Schwarzkopf
- Jose Ramirez and Jose Pedraza battle on Feb.5th in Fresno, California
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