The 46th annual WBC Convention in Chengdu, China officially declared that world heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko has to face mandatory challenger Juan Carlos Gomez in his very next fight.
Klitschko had requested to do a voluntary defense first but the Board of Governors chaired by President Dr. Jose Sulaiman decided in favour of no. 1 contender Gomez who had won the final elimination bout against Vladimir Virchis on September 27 in Hamburg.
“This is exactly what we wanted”, stated promoter Ahmet Öner. “This is a great day for Arena Box-Promotion. We got Gomez vs. Vitali – now we also want the world famous green belt.”
If Arena and K2 promotions cannot reach an agreement on when and where to stage the fight, there will be a purse bid on December 19 at the WBC’s headquarters in Mexico City.
Gomez’ Cuban compatriot Yuriorkis Gamboa will also have the chance to win his first world title after only 12 pro-fights. “El Ciclon de Guantamo” will face Elio Rojas from Domenican Republic for the interim world featherweight championship because titleholder Oscar Larios got injured in his most recent win over Takahiro Aoh on October 16.
Former WBO world heavyweight champion Herbie Hide has been nominated to fight a final elimination bout for the WBC cruiserweight championship against Matt Godfrey. The winner will take on the winner of the world title fight between reigning champion Giacobbe Fragomeni and Krysztof Wlodarczyk from Poland .
“After all these perfect results of the Convention we are looking forward to a great year of 2009”, said Ahmet Öner. “We have done our job. Now it’s up to the fighters to prove that they really are the best in the world. I hope we can come to next year’s Convention in Korea accompanied by three world champions!”