Rigondeaux in Recess

By Robert Ecksel on October 31, 2015
Rigondeaux in Recess
The Jackal needs to forget the jackals and simply get on with it. (Chris Farina/Top Rank)

If he hadn’t killed the goose that laid the golden egg (Donaire), maybe none of this would have happened…

One has to wonder about Guillermo Rigondeaux. The undefeated southpaw from Miami by way of Santiago de Cuba, Cuba, is 15-0 (10 KOs) and one of the top 10 pound-for-pound fighters in the world, but he hardly ever fights. Managerial and promotional disputes may have sidelined his career. He may be disgusted at the turn of events. But he’s not the first or last fighter to detest his overseers. He’s also not the first or last fighter to be stripped of his title(s) due to inactivity.

Earlier this week the WBO stripped him of his bantamweight title. President of the WBO, Francisco Valcarcel, said, “Unfortunately we had to deal today with the topic of Rigondeaux, who over 31 months has only made three fights.

“He has not made any announcement on when he will fight again. We do not know what the reasons are and we cannot punish 15 other fighters that are in the rankings to protect a champion—regardless of how good he is.

“For boxing purists, Rigondeaux is one of the most extraordinary boxers you can see. But there is a responsibility to those ranked under the WBO. The title is not something that belongs to the champion but to the entire sport and every member of the sanctioning body that is rated has a right to fight for it.

“For us, we feel sorry stripping him as world champion but we must enforce the rules for inactivity. The title has to be declared vacant and in this case the champion has made only three defenses in almost three years.”

To make matters worse, the WBA also stripped Rigondeaux of his super bantamweight title for the exact same reasons, demoting him to Champion in Recess until such time as he decides he wants to fight.

WBA Championship Committee Chairman Gilberto Jesus Mendoza Jr. stated that “Rigondeaux is presumed to know a champion must regularly defend his title, remain active, and follow the WBA’s instructions regarding title defenses. Rigondeaux has not defended or scheduled to defend his title in a timely fashion culminating in only four bouts since September 15, 2012.

“In light of Rigondeaux’s impressive record and accomplishments, the delays associated with his various managerial/promoter disputes, and the loss of his unification status, Rigondeaux is named Champion in Recess. Rigondeaux must come out of recess and face the Champion on or before May 1, 2016.”

Mendoza determined that under the circumstances, “WBA champion Scott Quigg is authorized via special permit to participate in a unification bout with IBF champion Carl Frampton.”

If he hadn’t killed the goose that laid the golden egg (Donaire), maybe none of this would have occurred. But to lose so he could win would be dishonest…and we know how boxing frowns on dishonesty.

It’s not game over for Rigondeaux. But at the age of 35, and with the clock is ticking, The Jackal needs to forget the jackals and simply get on with it.

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  1. Mohummad Humza Elahi 08:27am, 11/01/2015

    What better way to setup the Frampton-Quigg fight than to strip the agreed champion of his status? Neither wants to fight Rigo and they want to fight each other, he was the holdup in making that happen and now poof, that problem has disappeared.  The Parable of The Jackal will be one for the boxing historians to ponder over in the years to come.

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