Jermell Charlo said he’ll be defending his undisputed junior middleweight championship against WBO #1 Tim Tszyu on January 2023.
Jermell revealed the news of his new fight on Instagram, originally posting the date of January 28th before returning to edit out that date. Charlo did drop a hint for who he’ll be facing by including the flag of Australia in his Instagram post, which is where Tszyu lives.
Some boxing fans believe Jermell is following the pattern of his twin brother by avoiding a tough fight.
Jermall Charlo has been called out many times by David Benavidez and hasn’t accepted the challenge. Now, we’re seeing Jermell push a dangerous fight against Tszyu into 2023, and there are no guarantees it’ll happen then either.
Charlo (35-1-1, 19 KOs) gave no explanation for why he decided not to return to the ring this year to defend against Tszyu (21-0, 15 KOs), but it could be that he knows this is going to be a hard fight.
It doesn’t help Jermell to prolong the fight with Tszyu because that will give him more time to work on his head movement & defense, two areas that he badly needs work on.
Tszyu, 27, has an excellent chin and a lot of power in both hands. He recently stepped it up against American Terrell Gaushia and beat him by a 12-round unanimous decision in a tougher-than-expected fight on March 26th.
Gausha dropped Tszyu in the first round and landed a lot of shots throughout the 12-round contest. However, Tszyu took over the fight after the first four rounds and wore down Gausha to win a decision.
Charlo had a lot of trouble in his two recent fights with former WBO 154-lb champion Brian Castano. In their first fight in July 2021, it was ruled a 12-round draw, but the boxing public had Castano winning.
In their rematch two months ago, on May 14th, Jermell stopped Castano in the tenth round in Carson, California. This too was a difficult fight for Jermell, but he was able to rise up and use his power advantage to knockout the always tough Castano.
“Twincharlo: Ain’t Done Yet, Unleash The Lion & Let Me Rumble.🇺🇸🔥🇦🇺 . BREAKING NEW. NEXT FIGHT DATE @lionsonlypromotions 🦁” Jermell Charlo said on Instagram.
American boxing fans would arguably prefer to see Jermell defend against WBC interim 154-lb champion Sebastian ‘The Towering Interno’ Fundora next rather than Tszyu. Still, it’s unclear whether Jermell will stick around long enough at 154 to fight the 6’6″ Fundora.
The unbeaten Fundora would be a tough out for Charlo, and you can’t blame him if he chooses to avoid the lanky fighter.
Jermell has talked about recently going up to 160, but there’s no one for him to fight in that weight class. If Jermell moves up, he’ll miss out on lucrative fights against Terence Crawford and Danny Garcia.