The WBA middleweight picture became a lot clearer overnight with the WBA passing down their decision on the special permit requested by champion Gennady Golovkin to avoid Brisbane’s Jarrod Fletcher. Having had ten defences of his title Golovkin is being elevated to Super-champion and Fletcher will now face Daniel Jacobs of the USA for the WBA World title.
On May 13th the WBA named Fletcher as mandatory to the champion Golovkin, a fight that connections of GGG seemed unwilling to take from the very day of the decision. Weeks of political positioning and negotiation have ensued with high profile network HBO also attempting to flex their muscle in the process. In a decision that pleases all camps the Fletcher vs Jacobs fight was officially announced by the WBA today. The decision opens the door for ‘Left Jab’ to fight for his first world title, a reward for his patience and rise through the professional ranks. “I’m over the moon to have an opponent named. I’ve said all along that I’ll fight anyone that is put in front of me, I want to fight the best in the world and Jacobs is certainly in that top tier. He’s an excellent boxer with a great record, our styles match up for what should be a great fight for me to pick up my first world title. I’m deep into training and ready to go” Fletcher was quoted as saying upon hearing of the decision.
“We’ve had Murray, Chudinov and now Golovkin all pull out of either contracted or mandated fights for their own reasons, fortunately Max Bursak and now Daniel Jacobs have both stepped up to take the challenge” Said Adam Wilcock from FightCard Promotions, manager of Fletcher. “Ultimately without the backing of HBO, Golovkin brings little to the table for Jarrod. Yes there’s the title there, and we wanted that opportunity for Jarrod. But we can’t force his camp to take the fight and they obviously have their own agenda for sidestepping Fletcher. The team around Golovkin are continually in the media saying they will fight anyone in the division, but here we have a boxer that’s been WBA top 5 for the last 15 months knocking on the door for that whole time and they keep avoiding us. Says everything I think. The WBA have been great in finding a workable solution to the problems and we look forward to seeing Jarrod crowned as the new WBA World Champion”.
Fletcher’s New York based promoter Greg Cohen was upbeat about the upcoming fight “This is a great fight for Jarrod and a great fight for the boxing public. For us it ticks many different boxes, it gets a shot at the regular World title and also increases Jarrod’s presence here in the US and on a global perspective. Here we have a boxer who is willing to travel and fight anyone. He fought Bursak in Monte Carlo when Murray inexplicably pulled out, we were prepared to go to Russia before that fight disappeared on us and now he’s happy to travel anywhere in the world to fight Jacobs. They are all signs of a champion in my book. This boy is a fighter that’s for sure’.
This WBA decision, with all parties coming to agreement and arrangement now opens up not only Fletcher vs Jacobs, but allows for the much rumoured Geale vs Golovkin match-up to be finalised.
Whilst the last details of date and venue are in the final stages of being put together, Fletcher will continue his full time training out of the successful Fortitude Gym in Brisbane under the watchful eye of head trainer Steve Deller.