Josh Taylor On WBA Title: “I Vacated The Belt”

Josh Taylor No Longer WBA Junior Welterweight Champion

Josh Taylor with his junior welterweight titles
Josh Taylor | Credit: Laurent Lustig/Boxxer

Josh Taylor Denies Being Stripped by WBA

Josh Taylor’s (19-0, 13 KOs) status as the undisputed junior welterweight champion of the world is officially over. That’s because Taylor is no longer the WBA champion. But the question is, was he stripped, or did Taylor voluntarily vacate the belt?


The sanctioning body released a statement announcing that the WBA sanctioning body committee has decided to strip Taylor for failing to follow through on an ordered defense against mandatory challenger Alberto Puello (20-0, 10 KOs). However, Taylor paints a different picture of what happened.

The 31-year-old took to social media, claiming he informed the WBA of his plan to vacate the title. He even took the time to respond to someone who suggested that he was not on the up and up.

Josh Taylor states that he vacated his WBA 140-pound title

The last time Taylor was in the ring, he escaped with a controversial split-decision win over then-WBO mandatory challenger Jack Catterall in February 2021. Afterward, the pride of Edinburgh, Scotland said it was likely his last match at 140 pounds.

On March 8, the WBA ordered that he must defend the title against Puello with a 20-day window to negotiate a match. With no deal made, a purse bid was ordered. But it was clear that Team Taylor had no interest. They didn’t even present an offer during the April 22 purse bid.

Whatever is the case and whoever is telling the truth, this is looking like step one in Taylor’s eventual move up the welterweight division. It was no secret he struggled to make the 140-pound division limit. He has eyes on challenging current WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford. Look for Puello to be matched with second-ranked number contender Ismael Barroso (23-3-2, 21 KOs) for the vacant belt.

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By: Michael Wilson Jr.

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Mike is the host of boxing podcast "Pound 4 Pound Boxing Report" and is a Senior Writer for