CORK, Ireland – Unified super bantamweight world champion Guillermo “The Jackal” Rigondeaux (15-0, 10 KOs), arguably the most avoided reigning world title holder in modern boxing history, will travel to London next month in order to publicly confront his mandatory challenger, Scott Quigg (30-0-2, 22 KOs), the World Boxing Association (WBA) “regular” 122-pound division titlist.
A month ago in an unusual move, Rigondeaux’ manager Gary Hyde formally petitioned the WBA to enforce a mandatory title fight between his WBA Super champion and Quigg. Hyde is awaiting the WBA’s decision. Rigondeaux is also the World Boxing Organization (WBO) and The Ring magazine’s super bantamweight champion.
A reigning world champion hasn’t been avoided by other world champions and top contenders like Rigondeux has for the past two years since, perhaps, junior middleweight Sergio Martinez, or possibly all the way back to middleweight Mike McCallum.
The top three super bantamweights in the world outside of Rigondeaux – International Boxing Federation (IBF) and World Boxing Council (WBC) champions, Carl Frampton and Leo Santa Cruz, respectively, plus Quigg – have avoided the Cuban great like the plaque. Once Santa Cruz’ promoter at the time, Oscar de la Hoya, announced that a Rigondeaux-Santa Cruz had to happen, Santa Cruz’ powerful adviser, Al Haymon, exercised a contract option and bought him out to avoid a fight with ‘Rigo.’ Frampton’s promoter, Barry McGuigan, has proclaimed his fighter, not Rigondeaux, as the No. 1 super featherweight in the world. McGuigan, though, is interested in Frampton fighting Quigg in a U.K. showdown, rather than a world mega-fight for three of the four major sanctioning world titles. As the “regular” WBA champion, Quigg is Rigondeaux’ mandatory challenger, yet, he apparently wants no part of the two-time Olympic gold medalist because his promoter, Barry Hearn, not only hasn’t pushed the issue, he’s in negotiations with McGuigan for Frampton to fight Quigg.