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IBF orders final eliminator between Carlos Ocampo and Konstantin Ponomarev

Ponomarev pulled out of a planned 2016 bout with Spence due to injury

Konstantin Ponomarev v Brad Solomon Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Having defeated Kell Brook, Errol Spence Jr. has inherited his responsibilities as IBF Welterweight Champion. The sanctioning body yesterday ordered top contenders Carlos Ocampo and Konstantin Ponomarev to face each other to decide Spence’s next mandatory challenger. The two have until June 19th to iron out a deal, although they have reportedly already expressed written interest in putting it together.

Ocampo (21-0, 12 KO) has spent the entirety of his five-year career in his native Mexico, facing local talent as well as veterans like Jorge Paez Jr. and Charlie Navarrete. He last fought in January, when he swept Daniel Echeverria through ten rounds.

Ponomarev (32-0, 13 KO) is 2-0 since his planned fight with Spence fell through, winning eight-rounders on the undercards of Lomachenko-Walters and Crawford-Diaz. He owns wins over previously unbeaten Mikael Zewski and Brad Solomon to anchor his CV.

Can’t imagine either of these two giving Spence much trouble. They’re not chumps by any definition, it’s just that I can’t imagine more than one or two active welterweights giving Spence much trouble. Anyone disagree?

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