By David Finger
Breaking news from the WBO convention: Dogboe to fight Juarez for the vacant interim Junior Featherweight belt.
Undefeated Ghanaian contender and reigning WBO International junior featherweight champion Isaac Dogboe may be the biggest winner at today’s Championship & Ratings Committee meeting at the WBO 30th Annual Congress. Reigning champion Jessie Magdaleno was forced to drop out of his November fight with #1 contender Cesar Juarez, and his medical notification indicated he would not be available to fight until March or April.
“We don’t want to wait that long,” President Valcarcel said of the notification.
This opened up a fight between Juarez and the next available contender, which according to the rankings was Filipino Marlon Tapales. But Tapales announced he was not available to fight as soon as needed to fight for a vacant interim title due to problems he was having with his trainer.
“According to the information I got, he (Tapales) won’t be available in December,” President Valcarcel said of the #2 ranked contender.
This opened the door for the next available contender: Ghana’s #3 ranked contender Isaac Dogboe.
“I’m more than ready to fight,” Dogboe said when asked if he could step up and fight Juarez in December. “Absolutely.”
Leon Panoncillo, who heads WBO Africa, moved to have Juarez-Dogboe be sanctioned for the interim title, which was seconded by member Danny Leigh of Australia. The motion was passed unanimously, which now opens the door for a WBO world title fight for both the gritty Mexican and the popular prospect from Accra before the end of the year.