Former undisputed super welterweight champion Jermell Charlo may be down to one belt, as Dan Rafael and Keith Idec both report that he either has been or will be named champion in recess. As a result, Sebastian Fundora and Serhii Bohachuk will battle it out for the full title on March 30th instead of the interim.
Charlo (35-2-1, 19 KO) has not fought at 154 since stopping Brian Castano in their May 2022 rematch. PBC, allegedly due to a lack of available dates, elected to schedule his mandated defense against Tim Tszyu for the following January, which gave Charlo enough time to get injured and withdraw.
Rather than face Tszyu on a rescheduled date, Charlo instead jumped up to 168 to challenge Canelo Alvarez, only to hit the deck and drop 10 rounds in a listless performance. To add insult to injury, the WBO deservedly stripped Charlo the moment the ring announcer introduced him as the undisputed champion.
Charlo then proceeded to vacate his IBF belt when overdue mandatory challenger Bakhram Murtazaliev came calling. Now all that remains is the WBA title, though that may be in jeopardy as well with Israil Madrimov and Magomed Kurbanov reportedly gearing up to fight for some form of it. Save for these announcements and getting charged with assault last month, he’s been effectively silent throughout the process.
This move is long overdue. Charlo completely failed in his duties as champion; if you’re going to hold four belts, you have to fight more often than Gary Russell Jr. It does, however, make it that much more inexplicable that his brother got so much slack from Mauricio Sulaiman.
It also raises the question of why no. 1 Charles Conwell isn’t getting the shot, but I’ve long since given up on trying to figure out what he and his team are doing with his career.