Katie Taylor is the sport’s only current fighter to actively hold undisputed championships in two separate weight divisions.
That status will soon change.
The legendary Irishwoman was instructed by the WBO to decide at which weight she will plan to campaign for her next fight and moving forward. The order was triggered by Taylor’s newfound placement as the fully unified champion both at lightweight and junior welterweight, the latter achieved in a ten-round, majority decision victory over England’s Chantelle Cameron this past Saturday at 3Arena in Dublin, Ireland.
Taylor is now being called to honor the pre-fight conditions that permitted her to exit the ring with every title in two weight divisions.
“The foregoing contest was sanctioned subject to specific provisions,” WBO Championship Committee chairman Luis Batista-Salas instructed promoter Eddie Hearn, Taylor’s promoter, on Monday in a letter obtained by BoxingScene.com. “If Katie Taylor wins the bout against Cameron, she has up to 10 days thereafter to determine which weight division she will retain. Failure to comply with such conditions will result in the Committee proceeding per WBO Regulations of World Championship Contests.
“Consequently, in light of the foregoing, Katie Taylor must decide within the timeframe provided in the referenced provision which weight division she will retain, either the Lightweight or Jr. Welterweight division.”
The ruling is in conjunction with Section 5 of the WBO Regulations of World Championship Contests. The regulation states that no WBO champion can hold its titles in more than one weight division at a time.
Taylor will now have until December 5—ten days from her win over Cameron—to decide whether to remain at junior welterweight or return to lightweight, as it relates to her WBO title status.
No such instructions were yet handed down by the IBF or the WBA as of Monday. WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman will not only refrain from making such a decision in the coming days but is already on record stating he will grant sufficient time for the 37-year-old icon to enjoy her victory lap.
Taylor (23-1, 6KOs) was faced with a similar decision following her WBO junior welterweight title win over Christina Linardatou. She entered their November 2019 meeting as the undefeated and undisputed lightweight champion with the intention of a one-off move up in weight. She outpointed Linardatou over ten rounds to become a two-division titlist but immediately vacated the 140-pound belt to resume her lightweight championship reign.
Saturday’s win saw Taylor avenge her lone career defeat. Cameron (18-1, 8KOs) claimed a majority decision victory on May 20—also at 3Arena for Taylor’s long overdue Ireland homecoming—to successfully defend her undisputed junior welterweight championship.
There was immediate discussion of a potential rubber match as the next fight for both Taylor and Cameron. Such a fight wouldn’t necessarily have to include every belt at stake, though it would be ideal for their fight to once again carry undisputed championship status.
That part will be for Taylor and Matchroom Boxing to either figure out on their end or work out with the WBO prior to the early December deadline.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox