By Rick Reeno
BoxingScene.com has been advised that the World Boxing Association has ordered a clash between Mario Barrios (24-0, 16 KOs) and Batyr Akhmedov (7-0, 6 KOs) – for the vacant WBA “regular” junior welterweight title.
Barrios is ranked at number one, while Akhmedov sits in the number two slot. Barrios fights under the Premier Boxing Champions banner, and Akhmedov is handled by World of Boxing.
The current champion is Regis Prograis, who is presently involved in the World Boxing Super Series junior welterweight tournament, and is scheduled to face IBF champion Josh Taylor in the finals.
Last time out, on May 11th, Barrios knocked out Juan Jose Velasco in two rounds. Velasco had previously gone eight with Prograis. Barrios has stopped his last eight opponents.
Akhmedov, from Uzbekistan, competed in the 2016 Olympics for Turkey, under the name Batuhan Gozgec. He won the gold medal at the 2015 International Kadyrov Tournament held in Grozny, Russia.
He also won a the bronze medal at the 2016 European Boxing Olympic Qualification Tournament in Samsun, Turkey – which allowed him to secure a spot in the Olympic games – where he did not medal.
Akhmedov has stopped his last four opponents, including Ismael Barroso last August, in a fight where Uzbek boxer got off the floor in the third round to secure a ninth round stoppage.