World Boxing Association
The World Boxing Association (WBA), formerly known as the National Boxing Association (NBA), is the oldest and one of four major organizations which sanction professional boxing bouts, alongside the IBF, WBC, and WBO. The WBA awards its world championship title at the professional level. Founded in the United States in 1921 by thirteen state representatives as the NBA, in 1962 it changed its name in recognition of boxing's growing popularity worldwide, and began to gain other nations as members.
|Purpose||Boxing sanctioning organization|
|Headquarters||Panama City, Panama|
|Gilberto Mendoza Jr.|
By 1975, a majority of votes were held by Latin American nations, and the organization headquarters had moved to Panama. After being located during the 1990s and early 2000s in Venezuela, the organization offices returned to Panama in 2007. It is the oldest of the four major organizations recognized by the International Boxing Hall of Fame (IBHOF), which sanction world championship boxing bouts, alongside the World Boxing Council (WBC), International Boxing Federation (IBF), and World Boxing Organization (WBO).
The World Boxing Association can be traced back to the original National Boxing Association, organized in 1921. The first bout it recognized was the Jack Dempsey–Georges Carpentier Heavyweight Championship bout in New Jersey.
The NBA was formed by representatives from thirteen American states, including Sam Milner, to counterbalance the influence that the New York State Athletic Commission (NYSAC) wielded. The NBA and the NYSAC sometimes crowned different world champions in the same division, leading to confusion about who was the real champion.
The International Boxing Research Organization describes the early NBA as follows:
Originally more comparable to the present American Association of Boxing Commissions than to its offspring and successor, the NBA sanctioned title bouts, published lists of outstanding challengers, withdrew titular recognition, but did not attempt to appoint its own title bout officials or otherwise impose its will on championship fights. It also did not conduct purse bids or collect "sanctioning fees."
The NBA officially became the WBA on August 23, 1962. Gilberto Mendoza was the president of the WBA from 1982 until his death in 2016, after which Gilberto Mendoza Jr. took over as president. In the 1990s, the WBA moved its central offices from Panama City, Panama, to Caracas, Venezuela. In January 2007, it returned its offices to Panama.
The WBA has been plagued with charges of corruption for years. In a 1981 Sports Illustrated article, a WBA judge claimed that he was influenced by the WBA president to support certain fighters. The same article also discussed a variety of bribes paid to WBA officials to obtain title fights or rankings with the organization. In a 1982 interview, the promoter Bob Arum claimed that he had to pay off WBA officials to obtain rankings for his fighters.
Though the "Super Champion" designation are for WBA champions who concurrently hold titles with the WBO, IBF and/or WBC, in some instances, the WBA has designated as "Super Champion" fighters with only the WBA title. (See below for the WBA's explanation of this.) This particular practice has come under scrutiny, as several boxing experts consider it a means for the organization to gain more sanctioning fees within each division.
The WBA garnered some attention in 2015 when it continued ranking Ali Raymi in its flyweight rankings, despite Raymi, who worked as a colonel in the Yemeni military, having reportedly been killed by a Saudi airstrike that year. Ali Raymi was ranked Number 6 at the time of his death and Number 11 after his death.
The WBA recognises the title holders from the WBC, WBO, and IBF organisations. The WBA refers to a champion who holds two or more of these titles in the same weight class as a "Super Champion", "Unified Champion", or "Undisputed Champion". This applies even if the WBA title is not one of the titles held by the "Undisputed Champion." In September 2008 for example, Nate Campbell was recognized as the WBA's "Undisputed Champion" at lightweight due to holding the WBO and IBF titles as well, while the WBA's "Regular" champion was Yusuke Kobori.
If a fighter with multiple titles also holds the WBA's title, the fighter is promoted to "Super Champion" and the WBA title—which is then referred to as the "Regular" title—becomes vacant for competition by other WBA-ranked boxers. As a result, the WBA's official list of champions will often show a "WBA Super World Champion" and a "WBA World Champion" for the same weight class, instead of simply "WBA Champion." The WBA has even been known to recognize three different fighters as one form of champion or another in the same weight class ("Super", "Regular", and "interim champion"), and there have been occasions where two different WBA "World" champions have defended their own versions of the same title, in the same weight class, on the same night, in two different parts of the world.
A WBA champion may be promoted to "Super Champion" without winning another organization's title: Chris John, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Anselmo Moreno, and Manny Pacquiao are examples. The WBA will also promote their titlist to a "Super" champion when he successfully defends his title five times.
Man of Triumph
Since 2015, the WBA awards a customized version of their Super Champion belt to big fights involving a WBA championship. The WBA called this the Man of Triumph belt, named after the trophy awarded to the winner of Mayweather–Pacquiao fight. The plate of the belt has the images of the two boxers fighting. Floyd Mayweather Jr. received the first Gold-plated version of the belt while Manny Pacquiao was awarded a one-time Rhodium-plated version. Other recipients of the custom Gold-plated belt are Anthony Joshua, Vasyl Lomachenko, Manny Pacquiao, Oleksandr Usyk, Canelo Álvarez and Callum Smith.
Current WBA world title holders
As of December 16, 2019.
|Weight class:||Champion:||Reign began:||Days|
|Mini flyweight||June 29, 2016||1265|
|Light flyweight||December 31, 2018||350|
|March 18, 2018||638|
|Flyweight||February 24, 2018||660|
|Super flyweight||December 10, 2016||1101|
|Bantamweight||November 7, 2019||39|
|Super bantamweight||December 9, 2017||737|
|April 20, 2019||240|
|Featherweight||November 24, 2019
|January 26, 2019||324|
|November 24, 2019||22|
|Lightweight||May 12, 2018||583|
|Super lightweight||October 26, 2019||51|
|September 28, 2019||79|
|Welterweight||July 20, 2019||149|
|November 30, 2019||16|
|Super welterweight||May 11, 2019||219|
|August 31, 2019||107|
|Middleweight||September 15, 2018||457|
|July 12, 2019||157|
|Super middleweight||September 28, 2018||444|
|December 15, 2018||366|
|May 5, 2019||225|
|Light heavyweight||May 21, 2016||1304|
|November 16, 2019||30|
|Cruiserweight||May 31, 2019||199|
|Heavyweight||December 7, 2019||9|
|November 25, 2017||751|
|August 11, 2018||492|
|Weight class:||Champion:||Reign began:||Days|
|Light minimumweight (102 lbs)||Vacant|
|Minimumweight (105 lbs)||July 23, 2013||2337|
|Light flyweight (108 lbs)||June 20, 2009||3831|
|Flyweight (112 lbs)||March 13 2017||1008|
|Super flyweight (115 lbs)||April 15, 2016||1340|
|Bantamweight (118 lbs)||January 16, 2015||1795|
|Super bantamweight (122 lbs)||November 18 2017||758|
|Featherweight (126 lbs)||March 11, 2016||1375|
|Super featherweight (130 lbs)||August 15, 2013||2314|
|Lightweight (135 lbs)||October 28 2017||779|
|Super lightweight (140 lbs)||May 25, 2019||205|
|Welterweight (147 lbs)||March 14, 2009||3929|
|Super welterweight (154 lbs)||June 18, 2016||1276|
|Middleweight (160 lbs)||June 22, 2018||542|
|Super middleweight (168 lbs)||March 3, 2018||653|
|Light heavyweight (+168 lbs)||Uninaugurated|
WBA affiliated organizations
- Mullan, Harry (1996). The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Boxing. London: Carlton Books. p. 121. ISBN 0-7858-0641-5.
- "Boxing Bodies: A Brief Chronology and Rundown". International Boxing Digest. 40 (1): 58. January 1998.
- "World Boxing Association History". WBA. Retrieved September 2, 2018.
- Heller, Peter (1988). Bad Intentions: The Mike Tyson Story. New York: New American Library. pp. 141–142. ISBN 0-688-10123-2.
- Mullan. The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Boxing. p. 122.
- "WBA ranking update leaves questions and criticism". Asian Boxing.
- "Super championships guidelines". WBA. Archived from the original on June 5, 2008. Retrieved November 14, 2008.
- "WBA Super Championships". WBA. Retrieved February 11, 2009.
- "Official Ratings as of September 2008" (PDF). WBA. September 2008. p. 2. Archived from the original (PDF) on October 31, 2008. Retrieved November 14, 2008.
- "Official Web Site >> World Boxing Association". Wbanews.com. Archived from the original on June 29, 2012. Retrieved June 18, 2012.
- Gabriel F. Cordero (November 30, 2012). ""Chocolatito" is the latest WBA super champion". Fightnews.com. Archived from the original on December 2, 2012. Retrieved November 30, 2012.
- "A Title Fight in Name Only - Boxing.com". www.boxing.com.
- "WBA orders Matthysse-Kiram, Barthelemy-Relikh II, Machado-Mensah".
- "WBA "Man of Triumph" Trophy".
- "WBA special belt for the Klitschko-Joshua".
- "Lomachenko and Linares Special Super Belt Made".
- "Paccquiao and Matthysse Special Super Belt Made".
- "Gilberto Jesus Mendoza will travel to Russia".
- "Boxing News: Special WBA belt for GGG-Canelo winner » December 4, 2019". September 14, 2017.
- "The WBA will make history in Saudi Arabia".
- "WBA Intercontinental Champions".
- "WBA International Champions".
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to World Boxing Association.|