Purse bids were called for two title bouts


Purse bids were called for a pair of world title bouts on Thursday.

The teams for secondary heavyweight titlist Manuel Charr and mandatory challenger Fres Oquendo have not been able to reach an agreement, and the same goes for those representing junior lightweight world titleholder Alberto Machado and mandatory challenger Rafael Mensah.

So the promotional rights to Charr-Oquendo will be auctioned off to the highest-bidding promoter on Friday at a WBA purse bid in Medellin, Colombia.

The winning bid will be split 50-50 between the fighters. There is no minimum bid, but the bout is mandated to take place within 90 days.

Charr (31-4, 17 KOs), 33, a Syria native fighting out of Germany, won the vacant second tier title by unanimous decision against Alexander Ustinov in Oberhausen, Germany on Nov. 25. Oquendo (37-8, 24 KOs), 44, of Chicago, has not boxed since losing a majority decision to Ruslan Chagaev for the same vacant title in July 2014. Injuries and other issues prevented him from fighting for the title again since but the WBA is obligated to give him a shot based on a federal court order after Oquendo won a lawsuit to enforce his rights.

The purse bid for the Machado-Mensah fight is scheduled for Feb. 19 at the WBA offices in Panama City, Panama. The minimum bid is $120,000 with 75 percent of the winning offer going to Machado and 25 percent to Mensah, though Golden Boy Promotions, Machado’s promoter, and Don King, who represents Mensah, could still make a deal before the purse bid.

Machado (19-0, 16 KOs), 27, of Puerto Rico, knocked out Jezreel Corrales in the eighth round of an upset to win a vacant 130-pound title on Oct. 21. The title was vacant because Corrales had missed weight the previous day and been stripped, so only Machado could win the title.

Mensah (31-0, 23 KOs) is an unknown commodity. He has a sterling record but has never faced a remotely recognizable opponent and has never fought outside of his home country of Ghana.

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