WBA Reputation Cleanup Process; Plans To Remove Titles

The WBA Responds To Being Held Under The Gun!

WBA logo; WBA belt being cradled.
WBA logo and one version of the WBA title.

The WBA is Continuing the Process of Fixing Its Sordid Reputation; Restructures Title Format

It looks as if the World Boxing Association (WBA) is attempting to do the right thing for once. On August 25, the WBA championship committee announced it will no longer honor or crown “interim” champion. There will also be no WBA “gold” belt holder. Instead, they will inhabit slots with a series of box-offs and mandatory fights between selected fighters.

The WBA has long been under fire for their excessive number of champions. Naturally the motivation for maintaining such an overabundance of champions was to collect the substantial sanctioning fees. This of course makes the organization appear greedy and corrupt. Not only that, sustaining the bloated roster of champions ultimately waters down the significance of each title. In doing so it clouds clarity on who is truly the best.

Yet, that is a grander problem throughout the sport itself. Purists are always being heard saying, ‘there are too many belts and not enough undisputed champions.


The process is far from perfect, however. Unfortunately, wiggle room was left for the WBA super and gold belts, as stated in Rule C. 33.

In the case of reigning Gold champions, they will no longer appear “above the rankings. However, they will occupy a place in the lists as from the next world ranking. They will be ranked just below the former interim champion or the official challenger, while they may be ordered to participate in eliminations or box-offs depending on the division.

Gold champions and regional champions who are not mandatory challengers or will not be participating in an eliminator or box-off may be allowed to participate in title defenses, all with the prior approval of the committee.

The Championships Committee can still order mandatory defenses of the Gold Championship or the regional championship. The resolution sent out Wednesday supersedes any of those issued in the past and helps advance the WBA’s world championship reduction plan.


The move also makes sense politically since the WBA was recently in hot water due to a bogus scorecard. On August 7, welterweight Mykal Fox boxed circles around Venezuelan Gabriel Maestre for twelve rounds. Despite his clear dominance he lost on all three of the judges’ scorecards, losing out on the “interim” title. Yet, judge Gloria Martinez-Rizzo submitted the most outrageous tally which had Maestre winning 10-2. This horrendous verdict and the particular card caused quite a stir.

The situation quickly worsened as fans went looking for more information on Martinez-Rizzo. Not only was she discovered to be an apparent bigot, she was married to a high ranking WBA executive Riccardo Rizzo. Martinez-Rizzo was even named WBA Judge of the Year in 2019. It is certainly not beyond the scope of imagination to believe that this recent restructuring is not an effort to clean their image and somewhat distract.

Regardless of the motivation it should be acknowledge it’s a decent step in the right direction. However, extra initiatives must continue in order to salvage their rep and gain complete trust from followers of the sport.

By: Michael Wilson Jr & Bakari Simpson

Featured Article: WBO Champ Lawrence Okolie To Defend Title Against Dilan Prasovic

About Authors54 Articles
Articles written by more than one author on 3kingsboxing.com.