Terence Crawford given mandatory status for Jeff Horn’s WBO crown

FORGET Manny Pacquiao, Jeff Horn has another challenge on his hands providing he gets past Gary Corcoran.

Introducing undisputed light welterweight champion, Terence Crawford.

The unified WBC/WBA/WBO/IBF and RING Magazine titleholder has signalled his intention to move up in weight, formally vacating his WBO and IBF championships as his team begin their plans of an eventual onslaught on the welterweight division, starting with Horn and his WBO welterweight strap.

Providing Horn (17-0-1, 11 KOs) is successful in his first title defence against unheralded Gary Corcoran (17-1, 7 KOs) in Brisbane on December 13th, Top Rank figureheads, who have a co-promotional deal with Horn alongside their existing long-term agreement with Crawford (32-0, 23 KOs), have plans for the pair to meet in March next year as part of their exclusive television deal with ESPN.

The US television giant aired Horn’s title winning attempt against Manny Pacquiao in July, as well as Crawford’s impressive performance against the previously unbeaten unified IBF/WBA titleholder Julius Indongo in August, whom the Nebraska native disposed of in three one-sided heats.

Top Rank chairman Bob Arum has confirmed that he will have Crawford ringside in Brisbane for the aforementioned Horn-Corcoran fight, with the idea of building an eventual meeting between his two unbeaten stars.

“I want Terence to see Australia and I want the people in Australia to see Terence,” Arum said.

“I think Crawford is an enormous talent, I know that if he wins the welterweight title I am going to look to match him with him a number of fighters that are managed by Al Haymon, like (former titlist) Danny Garcia, (unified titleholder) Keith Thurman and a huge fight would be one with Spence. That would be a big pay-per-view fight.”

Arum’s thoughts were echoed by Top Rank president Carl Moretti, who confirmed their intentions of making a salivating fight between Crawford and Horn.

“Crawford literally dominated and cleaned out a division,” said Moretti in an interview with ESPN. “There are no more challenges left for him at 140 pounds and, physically, his body is ready to move to 147 pounds and do the same thing he did at 135 and 140 — dominate a division.

“Now he’s pound-for-pound the best in the world and I think you’ll see more of that at 147 pounds. So he has vacated the WBO title and he will be notifying the WBC and WBA shortly.”

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