After WBA “super” featherweight Leo Santa Cruz defeated “regular” champion Abner Mares in June to unify the two belts, it was believed that there would no longer be a “regular” champion, but that is no longer the case. The WBA has sanctioned a fight for the vacant “regular” title between undefeated boxer Jhack Tepora and once-beaten Edivaldo Ortega.
Tepora, who sports a 21-0 record as a pro, will challenge for his first world title after winning a number of regional titles at super bantamweight and at featherweight. Tepora has not fought since knocking out Lusanda Komanisi in the second round of their September 2017 fight to win the then-vacant WBO Intercontinental featherweight title. Tepora is the No. 2 ranked featherweight in the WBA rankings and the No. 10 featherweight in the IBF rankings.
Ortega is the WBA’s No. 3 ranked featherweight and is also challenging for his first title. Ortega, who has a 26-1-1 record, has won his last two fights after losing his first fight against Eduardo Ramirez in 2016. Ortega has fought between featherweight and super bantamweight in the last few years as a boxer.
The featherweight title fight now means that there are a total of four world title bouts taking place at the card. Below is the world title lineup for the event, which still does not have a U.S. broadcast deal in place:
- Lucas Matthysse (c) vs. Manny Pacquiao: WBA "Regular" Welterweight Title
- Jhack Tepora vs. Edivaldo Ortega: Vacant WBA "Regular" Featherweight Title
- Moruti Mthalane vs. Muhammad Waseem: Vacant IBF Flyweight Title
- Carlos Canizales (c) vs. Bin Lu: WBA "Regular" Light Flyweight Title
The July 14 (July 15 in Malaysia) event will take place at the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia.