WBA super-lightweight champion Regis Prograis has withdrawn from the World Boxing Super Series tournament, leaving his fellow finalist, IBF counterpart Josh Taylor, without an opponent. The 140lb final, which reportedly was due to take place in the UK, had been tentatively pencilled in for October 5.
On Friday (August 9), Prograis and his promoter, Lou DiBella, released a joint statement regarding the withdrawal, explaining that they have filed a lawsuit against the WBSS organisers, Comosa AG, believing that the terms of their contract have been breached.
The statement read: “Today in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, Regis Prograis and DiBella Entertainment, Inc. filed for a declaratory judgement that Comosa AG, the owner of the World Boxing Super Series, has breached its contractual obligations to Prograis and DBE. Prograis and DBE further informed Comosa that Prograis is withdrawing from the WBSS, effective immediately.
“Today’s action is the result of a long and repeated pattern of behaviour by Comosa that includes late payments, scheduling delays, bad faith representations, missed deadlines, and broken promises. A recitation of this behaviour can be found in the Complaint filed today.
“There is no one more disappointed by this turn of events than Regis Prograis, who has expressed his desire to unify the super-lightweight division on a number of occasions. Comosa was provided every opportunity to see the WBSS to conclusion but it failed at every turn to meet its obligations to the contracted fighters. This action was commenced only after Prograis and DBE determined, as a result of Comosa’s conduct, that his participation in this venture was no longer possible.”
This situation is not the first time that Comosa has had to contend with disgruntled WBSS participants. Taylor’s previous tournament opponent, Ivan Baranchyk, initially withdrew from their semi-final clash, citing financial, communication and scheduling issues. A resolution was eventually reached, allowing Baranchyk to take part in the bout. It remains to be seen whether a similar outcome can occur with Prograis, but it looks highly unlikely at this stage.