List of current world boxing champions

Last updated

This is a list of current world boxing champions. Since at least John L. Sullivan, in the late 19th century, there have been world champions in professional boxing. The first of today's organizations to award a world title was the World Boxing Association (WBA), then known as the National Boxing Association (NBA), when it sanctioned its first title fight in 1921 between Jack Dempsey and Georges Carpentier for the world heavyweight championship.

John L. Sullivan American boxer

John Lawrence Sullivan, also known as the "Boston Strong Boy", was an Irish-American boxer recognized as the first heavyweight champion of gloved boxing, holding the title from February 7, 1882, to 1892. He is also generally recognized as the last heavyweight champion of bare-knuckle boxing under the London Prize Ring Rules.

Professional boxing sport

Professional boxing, or prizefighting, is regulated, sanctioned boxing. Professional boxing bouts are fought for a purse that is divided between the boxers as determined by contract. Most professional bouts are supervised by a regulatory authority to guarantee the fighters' safety. Most high-profile bouts obtain the endorsement of a sanctioning body, which awards championship belts, establishes rules, and assigns its own judges and referee.

World Boxing Association organization

The World Boxing Association (WBA), formerly known as the National Boxing Association (NBA) is the oldest and one of four major organizations which sanction professional boxing bouts, alongside the IBF, WBC, and WBO. The WBA awards its world championship title at the professional level. Founded in the United States in 1921 by thirteen state representatives as the NBA, in 1962 it changed its name in recognition of boxing's growing popularity worldwide, and began to gain other nations as members.

Contents

There are now four major sanctioning bodies in professional boxing. The official rules and regulations of the World Boxing Association, [1] World Boxing Council (WBC), [2] International Boxing Federation (IBF), [3] and World Boxing Organization (WBO) [4] all recognize each other in their rankings and title unification rules. Each of these organizations sanction and regulate championship bouts and award world titles. American boxing magazine The Ring began awarding world titles in 1922.

World Boxing Council organization

The World Boxing Council (WBC) is one of four major organizations which sanction world championship boxing bouts, alongside the International Boxing Federation (IBF), World Boxing Association (WBA) and World Boxing Organization (WBO). Many historically high-profile bouts have been sanctioned by the organization with various legendary fighters having been recognised as WBC World champions. All four organizations recognise the legitimacy of each other, and each have interwoven histories dating back several decades.

International Boxing Federation organization

The International Boxing Federation (IBF) is one of four major organizations recognized by the International Boxing Hall of Fame (IBHOF) which sanction world championship boxing bouts, alongside the World Boxing Association (WBA), World Boxing Council (WBC) and World Boxing Organization (WBO).

World Boxing Organization organization

The World Boxing Organization (WBO) is a sanctioning organization which recognizes professional boxing world champions. It is recognized by the International Boxing Hall of Fame (IBHOF) as one of the four major world championship groups, alongside the World Boxing Association (WBA), World Boxing Council (WBC), and International Boxing Federation (IBF). The WBO's headquarters are located in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

There are seventeen weight divisions. To compete in a division, a boxer's weight must not exceed the upper limit. Manny Pacquiao has won world championships in eight different weight divisions, more than any other boxer. The Klitschko brothers, Vitali and Wladimir, held all four major titles in the heavyweight division from 2011 to 2013; they were the first brothers to hold versions of the heavyweight championship at the same time. [5]

A weight class is a measurement weight range for boxers. The lower limit of a weight class is equal to the upper weight limit of the class below it. The top class, with no upper limit, is called heavyweight in professional boxing and super heavyweight in amateur boxing. A boxing match is usually scheduled for a fixed weight class, and each boxer's weight must not exceed the upper limit. Although professional boxers may fight above their weight class, an amateur boxer's weight must not fall below the lower limit. A nonstandard weight limit is called a catchweight.

Manny Pacquiao Filipino professional boxer and politician

Emmanuel Dapidran Pacquiao, PLH is a Filipino professional boxer and politician, currently serving as a Senator of the Philippines.

Championships

When a champion, for reasons beyond his control such as an illness or injury, is unable to defend his title within the normal mandatory time, the sanctioning bodies may order an interim title bout and award the winner an interim championship. The WBA and WBC may change the status of their inactive champions to "Champion in Recess".

An interim championship is an alternate title that is awarded by the four major sanctioning bodies of professional boxing, and in other combat sports such as kickboxing and mixed martial arts.

World Boxing Association

The World Boxing Association (WBA) was founded in 1921 as the National Boxing Association (NBA), a national regulating body of the United States. On August 23, 1962, the NBA became the WBA, which today has its head office in Panama. [6] According to WBA championship rules, when a champion also holds a title of one of the other three major sanctioning bodies in an equivalent weight division, that boxer is granted a special recognition of "Unified Champion", and is given more time between mandatory title defences. The WBA Championships Committee and President may also designate a champion as a "Super Champion" or "Undisputed Champion" in exceptional circumstances; [1] the standard WBA title is then vacated and contested between WBA-ranked contenders. When a WBA "Regular Champion" makes between five and ten successful defences, he may be granted the WBA "Super" title upon discretion of a vote of the WBA's board of governors.

Panama Republic in Central America

Panama, officially the Republic of Panama, is a country in Central America, bordered by Costa Rica to the west, Colombia to the southeast, the Caribbean Sea to the north, and the Pacific Ocean to the south. The capital and largest city is Panama City, whose metropolitan area is home to nearly half the country's 4 million people.

World Boxing Council

The World Boxing Council (WBC) was founded in Mexico City, Mexico on February 14, 1963 in order to establish an international regulating body. [7] The WBC established many of today's safety measures in boxing, such as the standing eight count, [8] a limit of 12 rounds instead of 15, and additional weight divisions. More information about the WBC's titles including "Silver", "Diamond", "Emeritus", "Honorary", and "Supreme Champion" can be read at the WBC article.

A standing eight count, also known as a protection count, is a boxing judgment call made by a referee during a bout. When invoked, the referee stops the action and counts to eight. Typically, a boxer can take 3 standing eight counts in a round. During that time the referee will determine if the boxer can continue. When the count reaches eight, the referee often moves back two steps and instructs the boxer to walk towards them and hold their arms out. This helps the referee determine if the boxer is functioning and alert enough to continue. If the boxer is unsteady on his feet, or seems unable to focus on the referee, the bout is ended on account of a TKO.

International Boxing Federation

The International Boxing Federation (IBF) originated in September 1976 as the United States Boxing Association (USBA) when American members of the WBA withdrew in order to legitimize boxing in the United States with "unbiased" ratings. [9] In April 1983, the organization established an international division that was known as the United States Boxing Association-International (USBA-I). [9] In May 1984, the New Jersey-based USBA-I was renamed and became the IBF. [9]

World Boxing Organization

The World Boxing Organization (WBO) was founded in San Juan, Puerto Rico (which is a self-governing commonwealth of the United States) in 1988. In its early years the WBO's titles were not widely recognized. By 2012 when the Japan Boxing Commission officially recognized the governing body, it had gained similar status to the other three major sanctioning bodies. Its motto is "dignity, democracy, honesty." [10] When a WBO champion has reached "preeminent status", the WBO's Executive Committee may designate him as a "Super Champion". [11] However, this is only an honorary title and not the same as the WBA's policy of having separate "Super" and "Regular" champions. A WBO "Super Champion" cannot win or lose that recognition in the ring; it is merely awarded by the WBO.

The Ring

The boxing magazine The Ring maintains its own version of the lineal championship. The original title sequence began from the magazine's first publication in the 1920s until its titles were placed on hiatus in 1989, continuing as late as 1992 in some divisions. When The Ring started awarding titles again in 2001, it did not calculate retrospective lineages to fill in the gap years, instead nominating a new champion. [12] Cyber Boxing Zone, a website dedicated to tracking lineal champions, commented in 2004 that "The Ring has forfeited its credibility by pulling names out of its ass to name fighters as champions". [13]

In 2007, The Ring was acquired by the owners of fight promoter Golden Boy Promotions, [14] which has publicized The Ring's world championships when they are at stake in fights it promotes (such as Joe Calzaghe vs. Roy Jones Jr. in 2008). [15] Since 2012, to reduce the number of vacant titles, The Ring allows fights between a number one or two contender; or alternatively a number three, four, or five contender to fill a vacant title. This has prompted further doubts about its credibility. [16] [17] [18] Some boxing journalists have been extremely critical of the new championship policy and state that if this new policy is followed, the Ring title will lose the credibility it once held. [19] [20] [21]

Current champions

The current champions in each weight division are listed below. Each champion's professional boxing record is shown in the following format: wins–losses–draws–no contests (knockout wins).

Heavyweight (200+ lb/90.7+ kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Anthony Joshua
Super champion
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom
22–0 (21 KO)
April 29, 2017
Deontay Wilder
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
40–0–1 (39 KO)
January 17, 2015
Anthony Joshua
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom
22–0 (21 KO)
April 9, 2016
Anthony Joshua
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom
22–0 (21 KO)
March 31, 2018
vacant
Manuel Charr
Regular champion
Flag of Syria.svg  Syria
31–4 (17 KO)
November 25, 2017
Trevor Bryan
Interim champion
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
20–0 (14 KO)
August 11, 2018

Cruiserweight (200 lb/90.7 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Oleksandr Usyk
Super champion
Flag of Ukraine.svg  Ukraine
16–0 (12 KO)
July 21, 2018
Oleksandr Usyk
Flag of Ukraine.svg  Ukraine
16–0 (12 KO)
January 27, 2018
Oleksandr Usyk
Flag of Ukraine.svg  Ukraine
16–0 (12 KO)
July 21, 2018
Oleksandr Usyk
Flag of Ukraine.svg  Ukraine
16–0 (12 KO)
September 17, 2016
Oleksandr Usyk
Flag of Ukraine.svg  Ukraine
16–0 (12 KO)
July 21, 2018
Beibut Shumenov
Regular champion
Flag of Kazakhstan.svg  Kazakhstan
18–2 (12 KO)
July 7, 2018
Krzysztof Głowacki
Interim champion
Flag of Poland.svg  Poland
31–1 (19 KO)
November 10, 2018

Light heavyweight (175 lb/79.4 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Dmitry Bivol
Flag of Russia.svg  Russia
16–0 (11 KO)
September 23, 2017
Oleksandr Gvozdyk
Flag of Ukraine.svg  Ukraine
16–0 (13 KO)
December 1, 2018
Artur Beterbiev
Flag of Russia.svg  Russia
13–0 (13 KO)
November 11, 2017
Sergey Kovalev
Flag of Russia.svg  Russia
33–3–1 (28 KO)
February 2, 2019
vacant
Marcus Browne
Interim champion
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
23–0 (16 KO)
January 19, 2019

Super middleweight (168 lb/76.2 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Callum Smith
Super champion
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom
25–0 (18 KO)
September 28, 2018
Anthony Dirrell
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
33–1–1 (24 KO)
February 23, 2019
Caleb Plant
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
18–0 (10 KO)
January 13, 2019
vacant Callum Smith
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom
25–0 (18 KO)
September 28, 2018
Canelo Álvarez
Regular champion
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
51–1–2 (35 KO)
December 15, 2018
David Benavidez
Champion in recess
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
20–0 (17 KO)
September 8, 2017

Middleweight (160 lb/72.6 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Canelo Álvarez
Super champion
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
51–1–2 (35 KO)
September 15, 2018
Canelo Álvarez
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
51–1–2 (35 KO)
September 15, 2018
Daniel Jacobs
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
35–2 (29 KO)
October 27, 2018
Demetrius Andrade
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
27–0 (17 KO)
October 20, 2018
Canelo Álvarez
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
51–1–2 (35 KO)
September 15, 2018
Robert Brant
Regular champion
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
25–1 (17 KO)
October 20, 2018
Jermall Charlo
Interim champion
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
28–0 (21 KO)
April 21, 2018

Light middleweight (154 lb/69.9 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Jarrett Hurd
Super champion
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
23–0 (16 KO)
April 8, 2018
Tony Harrison
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
28–2 (21 KO)
December 22, 2018
Jarrett Hurd
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
23–0 (16 KO)
February 25, 2017
Jaime Munguia
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
32–0 (26 KO)
May 12, 2018
vacant
Brian Castaño
Regular champion
Flag of Argentina.svg  Argentina
15–0–1 (11 KO)
October 22, 2016

Welterweight (147 lb/66.7 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Keith Thurman
Super champion
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
29–0–0–1 (22 KO)
February 7, 2017
Shawn Porter
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
30–2–1 (17 KO)
September 8, 2018
Errol Spence Jr.
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
25–0 (21 KO)
May 27, 2017
Terence Crawford
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
34–0 (25 KO)
June 9, 2018
vacant
Manny Pacquiao
Regular champion
Flag of the Philippines.svg  Philippines
61–7–2 (39 KO)
July 15, 2018

Light welterweight (140 lb/63.5 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Kiryl Relikh
Flag of Belarus.svg  Belarus
23–2 (19 KO)
March 10, 2018
José Ramírez
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
24–0 (16 KO)
March 17, 2018
Ivan Baranchyk
Flag of Belarus.svg  Belarus
19–0 (12 KO)
October 27, 2018
Maurice Hooker
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
26–0–3 (17 KO)
June 9, 2018
vacant

Lightweight (135 lb/61.2 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Vasyl Lomachenko
Super champion
Flag of Ukraine.svg  Ukraine
12–1 (9 KO)
May 12, 2018
Mikey Garcia
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
39–1 (30 KO)
January 28, 2017
Richard Commey
Flag of Ghana.svg  Ghana
28–2 (25 KO)
February 2, 2019
Vasyl Lomachenko
Flag of Ukraine.svg  Ukraine
12–1 (9 KO)
December 8, 2018
Vasyl Lomachenko
Flag of Ukraine.svg  Ukraine
12–1 (9 KO)
May 12, 2018

Super featherweight (130 lb/59 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Gervonta Davis
Super champion
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
21–0 (20 KO)
April 21, 2018
Miguel Berchelt
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
35–1 (31 KO)
January 28, 2017
Tevin Farmer
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
29–4–1–1 (6 KO)
August 3, 2018
Masayuki Ito
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan
25–1–1 (13 KO)
July 28, 2018
vacant
Andrew Cancio
Regular champion
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
20–4–2 (15 KO)
February 9, 2019

Featherweight (126 lb/57.2 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Léo Santa Cruz
Super champion
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
36–1–1 (19 KO)
January 28, 2017
Gary Russell Jr.
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
29–1 (17 KO)
March 28, 2015
Josh Warrington
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom
28–0 (6 KO)
May 19, 2018
Óscar Valdez
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
25–0 (20 KO)
July 23, 2016
vacant
Xu Can
Regular champion
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg  China
16–2 (2 KO)
January 26, 2019

Super bantamweight (122 lb/55.3 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Daniel Roman
Flag of the United States.svg  United States
26–2–1 (10 KO)
September 3, 2017
Rey Vargas
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
33–0 (22 KO)
February 25, 2017
T.J. Doheny
Flag of Ireland.svg  Ireland
21–0 (15 KO)
August 16, 2018
Emanuel Navarrete
Flag of Mexico.svg  Mexico
26–1 (22 KO)
December 8, 2018
vacant
Tomoki Kameda
Interim champion
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan
36–2 (20 KO)
November 12, 2018

Bantamweight (118 lb/53.5 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Nonito Donaire
Super champion
Flag of the Philippines.svg  Philippines
39–5 (25 KO)
November 3, 2018
Nordine Oubaali
Flag of France.svg  France
15–0 (11 KO)
January 19, 2019
Emmanuel Rodríguez
Flag of Puerto Rico.svg  Puerto Rico
19–0 (12 KO)
May 5, 2018
Zolani Tete
Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa
28–3 (21 KO)
April 22, 2017
vacant
Naoya Inoue
Regular champion
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan
17–0 (15 KO)
May 25, 2018
Reymart Gaballo
Interim champion
Flag of the Philippines.svg  Philippines
21–0 (18 KO)
March 23, 2018
Takuma Inoue
Interim champion
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan
13–0 (3 KO)
December 30, 2018

Super flyweight (115 lb/52.2 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Khalid Yafai
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom
25–0 (15 KO)
December 10, 2016
Srisaket Sor Rungvisai
Flag of Thailand.svg  Thailand
47–4–1 (41 KO)
March 18, 2017
Jerwin Ancajas
Flag of the Philippines.svg  Philippines
30–1–2 (20 KO)
September 3, 2016
vacant Srisaket Sor Rungvisai
Flag of Thailand.svg  Thailand
47–4–1 (41 KO)
February 24, 2018

Flyweight (112 lb/50.8 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Artem Dalakian
Flag of Ukraine.svg  Ukraine
18–0 (13 KO)
February 24, 2018
Charlie Edwards
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  United Kingdom
14–1 (6 KO)
December 22, 2018
Moruti Mthalane
Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa
37–2 (25 KO)
July 15, 2018
Kosei Tanaka
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan
12–0 (7 KO)
September 24, 2018
vacant

Light flyweight (108 lb/49 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Hiroto Kyoguchi
Super champion
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan
12–0 (9 KO)
December 31, 2018
Ken Shiro
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan
15–0 (8 KO)
May 20, 2017
Felix Alvarado
Flag of Nicaragua.svg  Nicaragua
34–2 (30 KO)
October 29, 2018
Ángel Acosta
Flag of Puerto Rico.svg  Puerto Rico
19–1 (19 KO)
December 2, 2017
Hiroto Kyoguchi
Flag of Japan.svg  Japan
12–0 (9 KO)
December 31, 2018
Carlos Cañizales
Regular champion
Flag of Venezuela.svg  Venezuela
21–0–1 (17 KO)
March 18, 2018

Mini flyweight (105 lb/45.5 kg)

WBA WBC IBF WBO The Ring
Thammanoon Niyomtrong
Flag of Thailand.svg  Thailand
19–0 (7 KO)
June 29, 2016
Wanheng Menayothin
Flag of Thailand.svg  Thailand
52–0 (18 KO)
November 6, 2014
Deejay Kriel
Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa
15–1–1 (7 KO)
February 16, 2019
Vic Saludar
Flag of the Philippines.svg  Philippines
19–3 (10 KO)
July 13, 2018
vacant

See also

Related Research Articles

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The European Boxing Union is a pan-European governing body that sanctions championship bouts in professional boxing. The EBU governs the most-prestigious continental title in Europe, the EBU European Championship, in addition to their EBU EU Championship for competitors from within the European Union and the EBU EE Championship for those outside the European Union.

In professional boxing, the undisputed champion of a weight class is usually a boxer who is recognized as the world champion at that class by each boxing organization, However, there are no officially declared necessary conditions needed to become an undisputed champion, as the major boxing organizations refer to all boxers holding at least two world titles in their respective division as "unified champions".

Lineal championship

In combat sports where champions are decided by a challenge, the lineal championship of a weight class is a world championship title held initially by an undisputed champion and subsequently by a fighter who defeats the reigning champion in a match at that weight class. In professional boxing, the lineal champion is informally called "the man who beat the man". Champions recognized by sanctioning bodies such as the World Boxing Association (WBA), World Boxing Council (WBC), or the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) may vacate their title voluntarily, or be stripped of the title for breaching the sanctioning body's regulations or contracts. There will thus be a breach of continuity in the list of sanctioned champions which the lineal championship is intended to prevent. However, there is no single canonical list of lineal champions at any weight class, because there is no agreed upon method of determining the starting point for each lineage and conflicting opinions on what to do when the current champion retires or moves to a different weight class, although there is agreement that any stripping of a title be discounted.

In different sports when a sportsman wins seven crowns, titles, medals, belts or another distinctions is called a Septuple Champion.

At the beginnings of boxing, the heavyweight division had no weight limit and the category historically has been vaguely defined. In the 19th century, for example, many heavyweight champions weighed 170 pounds or less. The first heavyweight champion under the Marquess of Queensberry rules was John L. Sullivan, known as "The Boston Strong Boy". He weighed around 200 pounds when in shape and was a bare-knuckle champion. He was defeated by Jim Corbett on September 7, 1892, in 21 rounds. In 1920, the minimum weight for a heavyweight was set at 175 pounds, which today is the light heavyweight division maximum. Since 1980, for most boxing organizations, the maximum weight for a cruiserweight has been 200 pounds. Boxers who weigh 200 pounds and over are considered heavyweights by the major professional boxing organizations: the International Boxing Federation, the World Boxing Association, the World Boxing Council, and the World Boxing Organization.

Since at least John L. Sullivan, in the late 19th century, there have been world champions in professional boxing. At the very beginnings, before any sanctioning body was established, many boxers proclaimed themselves as legitimate champions. Eventually, champions were recognized through public acclamation, successively establishing a lineage. Important sets of weight classes were those specified in 1909 by the National Sporting Club of London, and those contained in the 1920 Walker Law which established the New York State Athletic Commission (NYSAC). NYSAC recognized champions from its foundation in 1920. The National Boxing Association (NBA) was founded by other U.S. state bodies in 1921. Until the 1960s, both usually recognised the same lineal champion. However, disputes could arise if the champion retired or moved to a different weight class. Occasionally, the International Boxing Union recognised a different champion. The disputes were usually short-lived as a lucrative fight would be organised between the rival champions.

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