John Ryder's WBA World Super Middleweight fight back on

Callum Smith (left) and John Ryder during the WBA World, WBC Diamond & Ring Magazine super-middlewei

Callum Smith (left) and John Ryder during the WBA World, WBC Diamond & Ring Magazine super-middleweight titles fight at the M&S Bank Arena, Liverpool - Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Islington’s John Ryder learned last week that his middleweight shot against WBA champion Cuban David Morrell Jnr is back on again.

Having turned 33 last Monday, it was an ideal birthday present for the challenger.

The WBA decreed earlier this year that Morrell should defend his world belt in late June, against the very popular north Londoner, but the fight did not materialise.

Instead the WBA allowed Morrell to make a voluntary defence of his world crown on June 27 against Mexico’s Mario Cazares, whom he stopped in the first round. 

Now the WBA has decreed that Ryder’s promoter, Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing and Premier Boxing Champions, who looks after Morrell’s interests, has until August 7 to agree terms for the fight. If agreement cannot be reached by this date, then the WBA will put it out to purse bids.


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The 23-year-old Cuban southpaw Morrell who defected from Cuba to Minneapolis via Mexico has had only five fights as a professional, winning all five (four inside). Professional boxing is still banned in Cuba.

He had a very successful amateur career winning a gold medal in 2016 at light-heavyweight at the World Youth Championships.

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Southpaw Ryder (29 wins, 16 inside with just 5 losses) has been a professional since September 2010 and is vastly more experienced in the paid ranks than the Cuban champion.

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