Sullivan Barrera will get the light heavyweight world title shot he had been seeking, thanks to the World Boxing Association.
The organization has recently announced that Barrera is the mandatory challenger to WBA champion Dmitry Bivol and that a fight between the two boxers has been ordered.
Below is part of the official announcement the governing body made regarding a potential Bivol vs. Barrera fight.
The World Boxing Association (WBA) Championships Committee notified Cuban boxer Sullivan Barrera (21-1, 14 KO) that he is the mandatory opponent to fight for the Light Heavyweight Championship, currently held by Russian Dmitry Bivol (12-0, 10 KO).
The Cuban is granted the right to be a mandatory rival according to article C29 of the WBA Rules. Barrera’s team was duly notified, as well as Bivol’s group. This resolution must be complied with no later than July 22, 2018.
Barrera last fought on November 25 on the Sergey Kovalev vs. Vyacheslav Shabranskyy undercard on HBO, picking up a win over Felix Valera. Barrera had been promised a world title fight against either Bivol or Kovalev by Main Events, who promotes both Barrera and Kovalev.
The original main event for that fight was Kovalev vs. Barrera, but Barrera ultimately turned the fight down after Barrera was dissatisfied with the amount of money offered to him. Kovalev then took a fight against Shabranskyy, which would later in turn be fight for the vacant WBO light heavyweight title. Bivol, who was upgraded from interim champion to full champion, retained his title in November with a first-round knockout win over Trent Broadhurst.
With the WBA's announcement, it appears that Barrera will have his world title shot against Bivol. With that fight potentially taking place next, Kovalev will then need to find an opponent to face for his next fight, which is currently being planned for March at Madison Square Garden.