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Josh Taylor vacates WBC title, Jose Ramirez vs Jose Zepeda rematch ordered

With Josh Taylor giving up a second world title at 140, the WBC have ordered a rematch between Jose Ramirez and Jose Zepeda to fill the vacancy.

Jose Ramirez and Jose Zepeda have been ordered to fight again for the vacant WBC belt at 140
Jose Ramirez and Jose Zepeda have been ordered to fight again for the vacant WBC belt at 140
Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images

After delaying the purse bid three times, Josh Taylor has elected to simply vacate his WBC junior welterweight title rather than face mandatory challenger Jose Zepeda.

The WBC shared the news today, expressed its regret at “having lost so much time and having mandatory contender Jose Zepeda frozen as well as other fighters in the division,” and ordered Zepeda to rematch No. 2 Jose Ramirez for the belt.

Top Rank tells Dan Rafael that Taylor (19-0, 13 KO) did so in order to rematch Jack Catterall, whom most observers believe should have officially dethroned “The Tartan Tornado” earlier this year, but Taylor went about it in the most fan-unfriendly way possible.

There was nothing stopping him from doing this two months ago when the WBC first ordered it, and there was nothing stopping him from doing the same for the WBA title immediately after he was ordered to fight Alberto Puello.

Instead, he’s elected to sit on his belts and waste everyone’s time instead of letting the division get back in motion.

I can’t complain about Ramirez (27-1, 17 KO) vs Zepeda (35-2, 27 KO) happening again, obviously; their first meeting, which saw Ramirez power through an early deficit to eke out a majority decision, was plenty competitive and entertaining. Their recent forms suggest that the rematch should be even better. It’s just beyond aggravating that Taylor’s spent the last four months stringing everyone along and lying through his teeth about his plans.