WBO instructs Usyk to face Dubois to defend his heavyweight title
Oleksandr Usyk must defend his "super" championship against mandatory opponent Daniel Dubois, according to a WBA official.
Usyk holds the WBA "super," WBO, and IBF belts after two straight wins over Anthony Joshua, while Dubois most recently kept the WBA "regular" title after stopping Kevin Lerena in the third round earlier this month despite landing three times on the canvas.
The order recognises Dubois as the next contender for a mandatory title shot in the usual rotation for unified champions. Given that both the Gypsy King and Dubois are represented by Frank Warren and Queensberry Promotions, the order doesn't appear likely to derail plans for Usyk's potential undisputed world title fight against Tyson Fury.
It also reflects the WBA's efforts to reduce the number of world titles it holds. It happens a month after the IBF compelled Usyk to face Filip Hrgovic in an obligatory championship defence after the Croatian defeated Zhilei Zhang by decision to win their final title eliminator in August.
The WBC has not indicated that they will prevent Fury and Usyk from fighting, and they have also scheduled a final eliminator between No. 1 challenger Deontay Wilder and No. 2 Andy Ruiz Jr.