Oscar Valdez's next WBO featherweight title defense has been set.
The Mexican champion will defend his title against Jason Sanchez on June 8 at the Reno-Sparks Convention Center in Reno, Nevada. The fight will headline a Top Rank Boxing on ESPN telecast.
The news comes after WBO President Francisco Valcarcel stated that the organization would not sanction a fight between Valdez and Erick Ituarte for the world title due to Ituarte not being ranked in the top 15 by the WBO. That isn't a problem with Sanchez as he is ranked No. 13 by the organization at 126 pounds, making him eligible to fight for the title.
Valdez has held the WBO title since 2016 when he scored a second-round TKO win over Matias Carlos Adrian Rueda to claim the belt. Since then, Valdez has made five successful title defenses, defeating the likes of Miguel Marriaga and Scott Quigg during his title reign. Valdez last fought in February when he knocked out Carmine Tommasone in the seventh round on a Top Rank on ESPN card from The Star in Frisco, Texas.
Sanchez is a 24-year-old fighter from New Mexico who has won all 14 of his pro bouts. Sanchez scored a surprising victory over Jean Carlos Rivera back in November 2018, winning the WBO Youth Featherweight title by unanimous decision. Since then, Sanchez has fought just once when he stopped Daniel Olea in the second round of their fight back on that same February card that Valdez competed in.
Also announced for the card is a light heavyweight bout between Sullivan Barrera and Michael Seals. Barrera once challenged for the WBA light heavyweight title back in 2018, but was stopped in the final round by Dmitry Bivol. Barrera is also ranked by all four major governing bodies, being ranked No. 6 by the WBC, No. 2 by the WBA, No. 11 by the IBF and No. 6 by the WBO. Seals has won his last two fights, one of them by first-round TKO, and sports a 22-2 record in the pro ranks.