Unbeaten junior-middleweight boxing champion Jermall Charlo vacated his International Boxing Federation title Thursday, elevating the Jarrett Hurd-Tony Harrison Feb. 25 meeting to a world-title bout.
Houston’s Charlo (25-0, 19 knockouts), said in a statement released by the Premier Boxing Champions that he’s vacating the belt to “pursue bigger challenges and another world championship in the middleweight division.”
The 26-year-old twin of World Boxing Council junior-middleweight champion Jermell Charlo departs following a Dec. 10 knockout of Philadelphia’s Julian Williams at USC’s Galen Center.
Charlo said that in addition to having no interest in fighting his brother or gym-mate 154-pound champion Erislandy Lara, he views 160 pounds as a more comfortable fighting weight.
“The idea of being a two-time world champion is a big goal for me,” Charlo said.
Another PBC fighter, Danny Jacobs, fights for unbeaten Gennady Golovkin’s three middleweight belts March 18 in New York, and Charlo’s Dec. 10 fight promoter, Richard Schaefer, has also called for a date with Canelo Alvarez, who meets Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. in May and has vowed to meet Golovkin, should both win their coming bouts, in September.
Hurd (19-0, 13 KOs) and Harrison (24-1, 20 KOs) will fight in Birmingham, Ala., on Fox in the co-main event under Deontay Wilder’s WBC heavyweight title defense against former USC football player Gerald Washington.
A NEW BOXING TOWN: Jermell Charlo will defend his belt March 11 against Don King fighter Charles Hatley at the new MGM National Harbor in Maryland.
The night’s main event will be WBC featherweight champion Gary Russell Jr.’s title defense against mandatory contender Oscar Escandon.
And, instead of fighting at StubHub Center in Carson, World Boxing Organization super-featherweight champion Vasyl Lomachenko will defend his belt on HBO at the 3,000-seat venue outside Washington, D.C., against Jason Sosa.