IBF world middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin has been stripped of his title after reports have emerged that he has failed to agree a mandatory challenger fight. The 36-year-old was in discussions to fight challenger Sergiy Derevyanchenko, but the two camps could not come to an agreement in time.
This has led to the unified champion being stripped of one of his three major belts by IBF and with the title now vacant they (IBF) have confirmed that they will identify “two leading contenders” to challenge for the belt.
😬 Gennady Golovkin’s promoter Tom Loeffler on Canelo v Jacobs: “All I can say is that those two guys are guys GGG already beat last year.” [@ESPN]
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) June 6, 2018
The Kazakh’s camp were not too pleased with the decision, with his promoter Tom Loeffler, calling the IBF’s ruling a “complete shock” while also claiming that Golovkin has been “badly mistreated”.
“It comes as a complete shock that the IBF would make a ruling far beyond what the Derevyanchenko side was asking for. They weren’t asking for him to be stripped. They were asking to have their shot at the IBF title next, but they never asked for him to be stripped. In light of this ruling, I think the IBF has completely mistreated GGG. It is the worst treatment they have ever shown any unified champion in their history,” Loeffler said on hearing the decision.
“Gennady is disappointed in the ruling.”
BREAKING: The IBF stripped Gennady Golovkin of its middleweight world title on Wednesday as a result of the hearing late last month over having not agreed to a due mandatory fight with the organization's top challenger, Sergey Derevyanchenko by Aug. 3. https://t.co/PlfKxll8eE
— Dan Rafael (@danrafaelespn) June 6, 2018
Considered to be one of the best fighters of his generation, Golovkin won the IBF middleweight title by beating Canadian David Lemieux in 2015, knocking him out in eight rounds post which he successfully defended it against the likes of Kell Brook from Great Britain and Dominic Wade from the United States of America while drawing against Canelo Alvarez.
In a statement, the IBF said Golovkin had asked in April not to fight Derevyanchenko, due to an agreement alreadyin place to face Vanes Martirosyan on 5 May – a result of the rematch with Alvarez being postponed when the Mexican failed a drugs test.
The IBF agreed to Golovkin’s request, but on the condition he would agree a fight with Derevyanchenko by 3 August – but a deal has not been done.
There have been reports Golovkin and Britain’s Billy Joe Saunders – the WBO title holder – are close to reaching an agreement to fight. However, nothing as been confirmed on this as yet from both camps, with these reports being only speculation at this point of time.