Oscar Rivas To Make First Defence Of WBC Bridgerweight Belt In June; Will Face Evgeny Romanov

By James Slater - 02/17/2022 - Comments

Will the new bridgerweight division catch on in time? For most fight fans, if not darn near all, another weight division was the last thing the sport needed back when the WBC introduced the weight class – for fighters weighing between 200 and 224 pounds – in late 2020. We of course have more than enough weight divisions and world champions, and if you ask the average fan on the street today what a bridgerweight fighter is, he or she will almost certainly be unable to tell you.

Two fighters who are bridgerweight fighters are Oscar Rivas and Evgney Romanov. Rivas, 28-1(19) became the very first WBC bridgerweight champion last October, when he beat a game Ryan Rozicki over 12 entertaining rounds to take the freshly minted belt. Now, 34 year old Rivas will make his maiden title defence against the unbeaten Romanov, who is currently 16-0(11). Despite the confusion and derision the new world title has brought, this fight could prove to be another good action show.

Promoter Yvon Michel says the fight will go ahead on June 22, in either Montreal or Colombia.

36 year old Romanov of Russia was a standout amateur and he went pro in July of 2016. Romanov has made pretty slow progress (just 16 pro fights in five years) and his biggest wins have come against Siarhei Liakhovich and Dmitry Kudryashov, both of whom had seen better days by the time of their fight with him. There is no doubt, Rivas of Colombia has been in with the better quality of opposition; his win over Bryant Jennings and his competitive loss to Dillian Whyte proving as much.

But Rivas can be hit, he can be dragged into a fight, as Rozicki showed – and Romanov can punch pretty good. This one could be a fun fight. Rivas is the pick to win, but he may have his hands full. Can Rivas go on to enjoy a long reign as WBC bridgerweight champion, and can he get more fans on board with the 200-224 weight division as a result?