The WBA has given their approval for a 122-pound unification fight between Daniel Roman, their titleholder, and TJ Doheny, who holds the IBF belt. ESPN reports that the fight is likely coming in early April somewhere near Los Angeles.
Roman (26-2-1, 10 KO) won the WBA belt from Shun Kubo in Sept. 2017 in Japan, and made his first defense in the same country, beating Ryo Matsumoto in Feb. 2018. He defended two more times in 2018, beating Moises Flores in June and stopping Gavin McDonnell in October in Chicago.
The 28-year-old Roman will be facing another fighter who traveled to Japan to win his belt in Doheny, a 32-year-old Irish-born, Australia-based fighter.
Doheny (21-0, 15 KO) upset Ryosuke Iwasa in August of last year in Japan, a decision that was at least a little controversial. But he just made a successful first defense on Jan. 18, beating Ryohei Takahashi via 11th round stoppage in New York.
The winner of Roman-Doheny will be obligated to make a WBA title defense against mandatory challenger Murodjon Akhmadaliev (5-0, 4 KO), a fast-rising contender who was last seen on Nov. 24, when he beat Isaac Zarate on HBO.
As for the IBF side, they’ve just ordered a title eliminator between former beltholder Iwasa and Cesar Juarez, which will take place on Feb. 16.