Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Osawa challenged Oscar Valdez for the WBO title in 2016
China’s sole reigning beltholder, WBA “world” featherweight champion Xu Can, will see his next mandatory determined when #1 contender Hiroshige Osawa faces #2 Hector Garcia. As always, the two have 30 days to negotiate before going to a purse bid, and if one or the other declines, the next-highest contender in the rankings will get the call.
For those curious, Michael Conlan is #3, followed by Tomoki Kameda and Tomas Rojas.
Osawa (36-5-4, 21 KO) rode a 16-fight unbeaten streak into his first title shot against Oscar Valdez in 2016, which saw him battered into submission in seven. He’s 6-1 since, the only loss a split decision to former super bantamweight champion Shun Kubo.
Garcia (12-0, 9 KO) represented the Dominican Republic as a bantamweight in the 2016 Games, where he lost a questionable decision in the Round of 32 to Dzimitry Asanau. His latest and most notable pro victory came against three-time Tajikistani Olympian Anvar Yunusov, whom Garcia beat by split decision last July.
Whoever wins, I’m just hoping Xu’s career stays on track while the coronavirus wreaks havoc on Eurasian boxing.