WBA Champion Arsen Goulamirian Could’ve Been In The Opposite Corner In Bournemouth If One Crucial Point Was Agreed
NoSmokeSport.com broke the news on Monday that Lawrence Okolie (19-0, 14 KOs) would defend his WBO Cruiserweight World title against hometown hero Chris Billam-Smith (17-1 12KOs) at the 11,000-capacity Vitality Stadium, in Bournemouth on Saturday 27th May, live on Sky Sports.
But this wasn’t the original plan, up until late last week the draft article was based around the fact that France’s WBA Cruiserweight champion Arsen Goulamirian (27-0, 18 KOs) would be the champion coming to Bournemouth.
NoSmokeSport learnt towards the end of last week that fight negotiations had stalled for unspecified reasons and that Britain’s Okolie was now the focus. Okolie was originally supposed to meet the winner of Goulamirian-CBS.
Goulamirian’s promoter Yohan Zaoui has revealed to a French newspaper that the reason they didn’t take the Billam-Smith clash on May 27 was down to BOXXER/Ben Shalom refusing to grant Goulamirian a rematch clause in the case that the champion was to suffer defeat in a voluntary defence.
The Frenchman was wary of English judging and therefore would not take the fight without the insurance of a rematch clause. Rematch clauses in voluntary defences of a world title are industry standard for the most part.
Goulamirian now plans to box in the summer with multiple options available including waiting for the Okolie-CBS winner in the second half of the year for a unification fight.