JOSH TAYLOR has been STRIPPED of his WBA super-lightweight title, the governing body has announced.
The boxer himself insists it was he who decided to vacate the belt, however.
Taylor, 31, most recently defended his titles against Jack Catterall in February, coming out on top via points in a controversial win at the OVO Hydro in Glasgow.
The Tartan Tornado was ordered by the WBA to take on fellow undefeated fighter, Alberto Puello of the Dominican Republic for his next match.
But the governing body have said Taylor’s team’s failed to correspond with them and meet a deadline to take forward a bout with the top-ranked challenger.
A statement from the WBA read: “The World Boxing Association (WBA) championships committee, in accordance with the organisation’s rules, has decided that the super lightweight title, which was held by the Scottish Josh Taylor, is vacant as of May 13.”
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Taylor responded on social media and claimed he had actually decided to vacate the belt himself.
He tweeted: “FYI, I vacated it the belt I want (sic) stripped.”
Taylor explained in another tweet that he had spoken with the WBA a fortnight ago.
He said: “I spoke with them a couple of weeks ago and told them I’m vacating it.”
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And in another post he said: “Trust me I know my own business.”
Taylor, who still holds the IBF, WBC and WBO belts, suggested after his defeat of Catterall that he would be moving up from 140lbs and the next step in his career would be in the welterweight class.
He said: “Most definitely this will be my last fight at 140lbs. That’s the last fight at 140lbs.
“Time to move up. Time to bulk up. Time to get some steaks in me and move up.
“I made the weight comfortably. I wasn’t lying when I made the weight. I’ve got a nutritionist on board.
“I made the weight very well but I’m getting to that stage where I’m 31 now.
“Making 140lbs and depleting my body takes a little bit out of me each time.
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“It definitely showed in my performance a little bit but that’s my last one at 140lbs, for sure.”
But since then he’s also insisted he wouldn’t turn down a rematch with Catterall, which would mostly likely be at super-lightweight again.