|Purpose||Boxing sanctioning organization|
|Headquarters||Mexico City, Mexico|
The World Boxing Council (WBC) is one of four major organizations which sanctions professional boxing bouts, alongside the World Boxing Association (WBA), International Boxing Federation (IBF) 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.
The WBC was initially established by 11 countries: the United States, Puerto Rico, Argentina, United Kingdom, France, Mexico, the Philippines, Panama, Chile, Peru, Venezuela and Brazil. Representatives met in Mexico City on 14 February 1963, upon invitation of Adolfo López Mateos, then President of Mexico, to form an international organization to unify all commissions of the world to control the expansion of boxing.
The groups that historically had recognized several boxers as champions included the New York State Athletic Commission (NYSAC), the National Boxing Association (NBA) of the United States, the European Boxing Union (EBU) and the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBC); but for the most part, these groups lacked the all-encompassing 'international' status they claimed.[ citation needed ]
Today, it has 161 member countries. The current WBC President is Mauricio Sulaimán. Former Presidents include Luis Spota and Ramon G. Velázquez of Mexico, Justiniano N. Montano Jr. of the Philippines and José Sulaimán of Mexico from 1975 until his death in 2014.
The WBC's green championship belt portrays the flags of all of the 161 member countries of the organization. All WBC world title belts look identical regardless of weight class; however, there are minor variations on the design for secondary and regionally themed titles within the same weight class.
The WBC has nine regional governing bodies affiliated with it, such as the North American Boxing Federation (NABF), the Oriental and Pacific Boxing Federation (OPBF), the EBU and the African Boxing Council (ABC).
Although rivals, the WBC's relationship with other sanctioning bodies has improved over time and there have even been talks of unification with the WBA. Unification bouts between WBC and other organizations' champions are becoming more common in recent years. Throughout its history, the WBC has allowed some of its organization's champions to fight unification fights with champions of other organizations, although there were times it stepped in to prevent such fights. For many years, it also prevented its champions from holding the WBO belt. When a WBO-recognized champion wished to fight for a WBC championship, he had to abandon his WBO title first, without any special considerations. This, however, is no longer the case.
In 1983, following the death of Kim Duk-koo from injuries sustained in a 14-round fight against Ray Mancini, the WBC took the unprecedented step of reducing the distance of its world championship bouts, from 15 rounds to 12—a move other organizations soon followed (for boxers' safety).
Among those to have been recognized by the WBC as world champions are the undefeated and undisputed champion Terence Crawford, Joe Calzaghe, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Roy Jones Jr., Wilfred Benítez, Wilfredo Gómez, Julio César Chávez, Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Sugar Ray Leonard, Thomas Hearns, Mike Tyson, Salvador Sánchez, Héctor Camacho, Marvin Hagler, Carlos Monzón, Rodrigo Valdez, Roberto Durán, Juan Laporte, Félix Trinidad, Edwin Rosario, Bernard Hopkins, Alexis Argüello, Nigel Benn, Lennox Lewis, Vitali Klitschko, Érik Morales, Miguel Cotto, Manny Pacquiao, Canelo Álvarez, Tony Bellew and Mairis Briedis.
At its discretion, the WBC may designate and recognize, upon a two-thirds majority vote of its Board of Governors, one or more emeritus world champions in each weight class. Such a recognition is for life and is only bestowed upon present or past WBC world champions. The following boxers have earned the "Emeritus Championship" appellation throughout their careers: Lennox Lewis, Vitali Klitschko, Roy Jones Jr., Bernard Hopkins (Honorary Champion), Mikkel Kessler, Sergio Martínez, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Kostya Tszyu, Manny Pacquiao, Danny García, Érik Morales, Toshiaki Nishioka, Vic Darchinyan, Édgar Sosa and Tony Bellew. During the WBC's 51st Convention in Bangkok, Thailand, Floyd Mayweather Jr. was named "Supreme Champion", a designation that nobody before him has ever achieved.
The WBC bolstered the legitimacy of women's boxing by recognizing fighters such as Christy Martin and Lucia Rijker as contenders for female world titles in 16 weight divisions. The first WBC World Female Champion (on 30 May 2005) was the super bantamweight Jackie Nava from Mexico. With her former-champion father at ringside, Laila Ali won the super middleweight title on 11 June 2005.
In 2010, the WBC created a "Silver Championship", intended as a replacement for interim titles.Justin Savi was the first boxer to win a Silver title after defeating Cyril Thomas on 16 April 2010. Unlike its interim predecessor, a boxer holding the Silver title cannot automatically inherit a full world title vacated by the champion. The WBC continues to recognize interim and Silver Champions, as well as interim Silver Champions. A year later, the WBC introduced Silver versions to its International titles. As of 2020, there are Silver titles of the female world title, Youth World title, USNBC title, Latino title and also FECARBOX title.
In September 2009, the WBC created its new "Diamond Championship" belt. This belt was created as an honorary championship exclusively to award the winner of a historic fight between two high-profile and elite boxers.The inaugural Diamond belt was awarded on 14 November 2009 to Manny Pacquiao, who won his 7th world title (in five different divisions) via a 12th-round technical knockout (TKO) over Miguel Cotto at welterweight in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States. Other holders of this title have included Mairis Briedis (cruiserweight), Bernard Hopkins (light heavyweight), Callum Smith (super middleweight), Sergio Martínez and Canelo Álvarez (middleweight), Floyd Mayweather Jr. (super welterweight), Errol Spence Jr. (welterweight), Regis Prograis and Josh Taylor (super lightweight), Nonito Donaire (super bantamweight and bantamweight), Léo Santa Cruz (featherweight), Jean Pascal and Sergey Kovalev (light heavyweight), Mikey Garcia (welterweight and super lightweight), Jorge Linares (lightweight), and Alexander Povetkin (heavyweight). Female Diamond champions have included Claressa Shields (middleweight), Amanda Serrano (super bantamweight), Ana María Torres (bantamweight), Raja Amasheh (super flyweight), Ava Knight and Jessica Chávez (flyweight). Although this title can be defended, it is not a mandatory requirement. The title can also be vacated in the case of a fighter's long-term absence or retirement from boxing.
The WBC Eternal Championship is an honorary title awarded to dominant champions that have never lost a world title and retired undefeated while having a solid number of successful title defenses. Jiselle Salandy was awarded the Eternal title as she defended the WBC female super welterweight title five times before her death on 4 January 2009. On 12 December 2016, Vitali Klitschko was recognized as "Eternal Champion", as he had 10 successful WBC heavyweight title defenses during his career before his retirement in 2013 and was never knocked down throughout his career either.
In early 1998, Roy Jones Jr. announced that he was relinquishing his WBC light heavyweight title. In response, the WBC ordered a bout between Graciano Rocchigiani from Germany and the former champion Michael Nunn to fill the vacancy, sanctioning it as a world championship match. On 21 March 1998, Rocchigiani won the fight and a WBC belt; in the subsequent WBC rankings, he was listed as "Light Heavyweight World Champion".
Jones, however, had a change of heart and asked if the WBC would reinstate him as the champion. In a move that violated nearly a dozen of its own regulations, the WBC granted the reinstatement.[ citation needed ] Rocchigiani received a letter from the WBC advising that the publication of his name as champion was a typographical error and he had never been the official title holder.[ citation needed ]
Rocchigiani immediately filed a lawsuit against the WBC in a U.S. federal court, claiming that the organization's actions were both contrary to their own rules and injurious to his earning potential (due to diminished professional stature). On 7 May 2003, the judge ruled in Rocchigiani's favor, awarding him $30 million (U.S.) in damages and reinstating him as a former WBC champion (Rocchigiani had lost a bout since his WBC title match).
The following day, the WBC sought protection by filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy (i.e., corporate debt restructuring) in Puerto Rico. The organization spent the next 13 months trying to negotiate a 6-figure settlement with Rocchigiani, but the fighter at first rejected the proposal.
On 11 June 2004, the WBC announced it would enter Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation (i.e., business closing and total asset sell-off) proceedings, effectively threatening its existence. This action prompted some in the boxing community to plead with Rocchigiani to settle the dispute, which he did in mid-July 2004.
Many in the boxing community have accused the WBC of bending its rules to suit the powerful boxing promoter Don King. The journalist Jack Newfield wrote, "...[WBC President José Sulaimán] became more King's junior partner than his independent regulator".Another journalist, Peter Heller, echoes that comment: "Sulaimán...became little more than an errand boy for Don King". Heller quotes British promoter Mickey Duff as saying, "My complaint is that José Sulaimán is not happy his friend Don King is the biggest promoter in boxing. Sulaimán will only be happy when Don King is the only promoter in boxing."
Newfield and Heller take issue with the following actions of the WBC:
As of 30 November 2020
|Weight class||Champion||Reign began||Days||Record|
|Strawweight||27 November 2020||3||35–1|
|Light flyweight||20 May 2017||1290||17–0|
|Flyweight||20 December 2019||346||17–1–0–1|
|Super flyweight||26 April 2019||584||41–3|
|13 November 2020||17||17–0|
|Super bantamweight||26 September 2020||65||31–0|
|13 August 2020||109||34–0|
|Featherweight||28 March 2015||2074||31–1|
|Super featherweight||28 January 2017||1402||37–1–0–1|
|Lightweight||13 December 2019||353||24–0|
|Super lightweight||17 March 2018||989||26–0|
|Welterweight||28 September 2019||429||26–0|
|Super welterweight||21 December 2019||344||34–1|
|Middleweight||26 June 2019||523||31–0|
|Light heavyweight||18 October 2019||409||15–0|
|Cruiserweight||31 January 2020||304||27–2|
|Heavyweight||22 February 2020||282||30–0–1|
|22 August 2020||100||36–2–1|
|Weight class||Champion||Reign began||Days||Record|
|Atomweight (102 lbs)||22 September 2018||800||16–0–1|
|1 December 2019||365||10–2|
|Strawweight (105 lbs)||30 September 2018||792||10–0–1|
|Light flyweight (108 lbs)||22 September 2018||800||18–5–3–1|
|27 May 2017||1283||23–1|
|Flyweight (112 lbs)||26 May 2018||919||31–6|
|Super flyweight (115 lbs)||13 May 2017||1297||20–9|
|26 October 2019||401||14–7–1–3|
|Bantamweight (118 lbs)||31 October 2020||30||20–3–1|
|Super bantamweight (122 lbs)||16 November 2019||380||16–2|
|14 November 2020||16||7–1|
|Featherweight (126 lbs)||11 March 2016||1725||40–10–2|
|13 September 2019||444||38–1–1|
|Super featherweight (130 lbs)||8 February 2020||296||11–0–1|
|Lightweight (135 lbs)||1 June 2019||548||17–0|
|Super lightweight (140 lbs)||4 October 2020||57||13–0|
|Welterweight (147 lbs)||15 August 2020||107||9–2|
|Super welterweight (154 lbs)||10 January 2020||325||10–0|
|27 November 2019||369||14–0|
|Middleweight (160 lbs)||17 November 2018||744||10–0|
|17 October 2020||44||20–0–1|
|Super middleweight (168 lbs)||13 September 2018||809||6–1–0–1|
|Heavyweight (168+ lbs)||vacant|
Julio César Chávez González, also known as Julio César Chávez Sr., is a Mexican former professional boxer who competed from 1980 to 2005.
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 World Boxing Council (WBC), International Boxing Federation (IBF) and World Boxing Organization (WBO). The WBA awards its world championship title at the professional level. Founded in the United States in 1921 by 13 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.
The World Boxing Organization (WBO) is an organization which sanctions professional boxing bouts. 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.
The International Boxing Organization (IBO) is a non-profit organization that sanctions professional boxing matches and awards world and regional championships.
Boxing in the 1980s was filled with important fights, events and personalities that shaped the sport. Boxing in the 1980s was shaped by many different situations, such as the continuous corporate battles between the different world sanctioning organizations, the void left by Muhammad Ali as the sport's ambassador and consequent search for a new boxing hero, the continuous presence of Don King as the sport's most famous promoter, the surge of rival promoters as Bob Arum, Butch Lewis and Murad Muhammad, and major rule changes. In 1986, Mike Tyson emerged as a fresh new face in the heavyweight division, which had seen a decline in champion quality level after Ali's retirement and, later on, after longtime WBC ruler Larry Holmes' prime. In addition, the IBF and WBO began operating.
In professional boxing, the undisputed champion of a weight class is the boxer who holds world titles from all four of the major sanctioning organisations—WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO—simultaneously.
Juan Manuel Márquez Méndez is a Mexican former professional boxer who competed from 1993 to 2014. He is the third Mexican boxer to become a world champion in four weight classes, having held nine world championships including the WBA (Super), IBF and WBO featherweight titles between 2003 and 2007; the WBC super featherweight title from 2007 to 2008; the WBA (Super), WBO, Ring magazine and lineal lightweight titles between 2008 and 2012; and the WBO junior welterweight title from 2012 to 2013.
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 referees.
Roger Mayweather was an American boxing trainer and professional boxer who competed from 1981 to 1999. He was a two-weight world champion, having held the WBA and lineal super featherweight titles from 1983 to 1984, and the WBC light welterweight title from 1987 to 1989. Additionally he held the IBO light welterweight title in 1994, and the IBO welterweight title from 1994 to 1995.
As in the 1980s, the 1990s in boxing's popularity focused on all divisions. When 1980s legends Sugar Ray Leonard, Thomas Hearns, as well as others retired, newer superstars filled the void: Pernell Whitaker, Julio César Chávez, in the early 1990s, Oscar De La Hoya, Félix Trinidad, Roy Jones Jr. and Floyd Mayweather, Jr. in the mid to late 1990s.
Santos SaúlÁlvarez Barragán, better known as "Canelo" Álvarez, is a Mexican professional boxer who is a four-division world champion. He has held the WBA (Super), The Ring and lineal middleweight titles, and the WBA (Regular) super middleweight title since 2018. He previously held the WBA (Unified), WBC and Ring light middleweight titles between 2011 and 2013; the WBC (twice), Ring and lineal middleweight titles between 2015 and 2019; the WBO light middleweight title from 2016 to 2017; and the IBF middleweight and WBO light heavyweight titles in 2019.
Boxing in the 2010s includes notable events about boxing which occurred during the decade of the years 2010 to 2019. The decade saw high intensity action in the welterweight division. The match between veterans Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao broke PPV records. The broadcast of the fight in the Philippines was watched by nearly half the country's households. Mayweather retired at a record 50-0-0 while Pacquiao became the first eight division champion. The middleweight division saw immense action in the later years of the decade. After a draw in 2017, Canelo Alvarez ended Gennady Golovkin's long reign in 2018. The heavyweight division was dominated by Klitschko brothers before Wladimir's loss to Tyson Fury in 2015. Other talents that emerged in the division were Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder and undisputed cruiserweight champion Oleksander Usyk.
Philippine Senator Manny Pacquiao has competed in professional boxing since 1995. Regarded by many boxing historians as one of the greatest professional boxers of all time, Pacquiao is the only boxer in history to win 12 major world titles in eight different weight divisions. He is also the first boxer in history to win the lineal championship in five different weight divisions, as well as being the first boxer in history to win major world titles in four of the original eight weight divisions of boxing, also known as the "glamour divisions": flyweight, featherweight, lightweight and welterweight.