Uzcategui – Maderna is taken off the bill while Hirsch steps in as the fill-in opponent
Newly crowned IBF super middleweight champion Jose Uzcategui (27-2, 23KO) has been the recipient of bad luck recently. Actually, one could say since becoming the mandatory for former IBF champion James DeGale.
Since defeating Andre Dirrell in a title eliminator rematch, he has been eager to claim a belt from a champion.
The IBF set him up to get that opportunity against DeGale but he decided to vacate the belt to look for bigger money fights.
In return, Uzcategui became the new champion with Caleb Plant immediately named as his mandatory.
Negotiations were going great for an October bout until Plant sustained a hand injury in training camp. Now enter Ezequiel Maderna.
Since the new challenger is not ranked in the top 15 by the IBF, the fight would not be sanctioned as a title bout. Maderna was only going to serve as a “stay busy fight” to keep the October 28 date.
However, 3kings has learned Maderna is having VISA issues trying to travel from Argentina to Oakland, California for this fight.
Fortunately for Uzcategui, he does not have lose his date. Tony Hirsch (23-6-2, 9KO) will step in as the third opponent to be scheduled to face the champion on this date.
The New Guy
Hirsch is not ranked in the top 15 of the IBF rankings. Therefore, this fight will not be sanctioned as a title bout.
This challenger is relatively unknown but has been in the ring with some top notch competition. Dimitri Chudinov, Demetrius Andrade, Jose Celaya and John Jackson are some of the names on his resume.
The latter being the last loss he has suffered in over five years.
It’s been a rough road trying to solidify an opponent but the positive is Uzcategui will not be inactive.
By: EJ Williams