As previously reported, the World Boxing Association (WBA) applied a lot of pressure on their featherweight champion Leo Santa Cruz, to make a mandatory defense of his title against Leigh Wood.

Santa Cruz is the WBA "super" champion at the weight, while Wood has the "regular" title. The WBA wants to establish a single champion in their featherweight ranks.

Earlier this week, the sanctioning body gave Santa Cruz 24-hours to make a decision - and the Mexican fighter's handlers have since informed the WBA of their decision to fight Wood.

Santa Cruz has not made a mandatory defense of the featherweight belt since June of 2018. A mandatory defense was due to take place by June of 2020. The last time Santa Cruz defended that title was back in February of 2019.

Santa Cruz made a last-ditch attempt to go in another direction, when he submitted an application to secure a special permit to have a unification fight with newly crowned WBC world champion Rey Vargas - which the WBA denied.

Vargas captured the WBC title earlier this month with a twelve round decision over Mark Magsayo.

Wood made a big statement earlier this year with a brutal knockout of undefeated Olympian Michael Conlan.

According to the WBA's Championship Committee, Santa Cruz's handlers are going to advise them of the fight details in the coming days.

Santa Cruz is guided by Al Haymon and Premier Boxing Champions. Wood is promoted by Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing.

If the two sides are unable to reach an agreement in a timely manner, the sanctioning body could be forced to get involved by ordering a purse bid.