By: Hans Themistode
When Manny Pacquiao made the stunning announcement that he was taking on Errol Spence Jr. on August 21st, in Las Vegas, Nevada, not only did he stun most of the boxing world, he also left WBA sanctioning body President Gilberto Mendoza dumbfounded.
Although Pacquiao has been sidelined for roughly a year and a half, there were widespread rumors that he was on the verge of facing either former four-division champion Mikey Garcia or WBO welterweight belt holder, Terence Crawford.
Still, despite the hearsay, Mendoza was firmly under the assumption that Pacquiao was on the brink of facing someone else.
“Initially, the plan was (Yordenis) Ugas to fight Pacquiao,” said Mendoza during a recent interview with ThaBoxingVoice. “But now, the Spence fight was announced.”
An assumed matchup between Ugas and Pacquiao was simply to clear up the confusion towards the top of his sanctioning body. After defeating Keith Thurman in July of 2019, Pacquiao was crowned with the WBA welterweight title. Ugas, on the other hand, outpointed fringe contender Abel Ramos for the WBA ‘Regular’ title in September of 2020. With Pacquiao remaining out for an extended period of time, he was then moved from full champion to champion in recess while Ugas was elevated to full belt holder.
Now, with Pacquiao announcing that he’ll be facing Spence Jr. for his WBC and IBF world titles, the Filipino native and his representatives have reached out to Mendoza to be reinstated as super champion once again.
While Mendoza refrained from making an official decision, he did, however, offer a glimpse into his likely settlement.
“Sean Gibson who represents Manny, they have written a letter to be placed back in it,” explained Mendoza. “We’re working on it. There’s a high probability. It has to be run through a championship committee and voted before taken to the President.”
As Mendoza continues to work behind the scenes to resolve the matter, if he does in fact, choose to reinstate Pacquiao, Ugas could be the odd man out. The Cuban native continues to search for an opponent as he attempts to return to the ring.
Although Pacquiao’s effort to regain his championship status has thrown confusion into the WBA sanctioning body, Mendoza appears to be on track to clearing up the uncertainty.
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