World Boxing Association

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World Boxing Association
World Boxing Association logo.jpg
Abbreviation WBA
Motto Simply the pioneers
Formation 1962
Purpose Boxing sanctioning organization
Region served
Gilberto Mendoza
Main organ
General Assembly

The World Boxing Association (WBA) is an international boxing organization that sanctions official matches, and awards the WBA world championship title at the professional level. Founded in the United States in 1921 by thirteen state representatives as the National Boxing Association, in 1962 it changed its name in recognition of boxing's growing popularity worldwide, and began to gain other nations as members.

By 1975 a majority of votes were held by Latin American nations, and the organization headquarters were moved to Panama. After being located during the 1990s and early 2000s in Venezuela, in 2007 the organization offices returned to Panama. It is the oldest of the four major organizations recognized by IBHOF which sanction world championship boxing bouts, alongside the International Boxing Federation, the World Boxing Council and the World Boxing Organization.


The World Boxing Association can be traced back to the original National Boxing Association, organized in 1921 in the United States. 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 in the boxing world. The NBA and the NYSAC sometimes crowned different world champions in the same division, leading to confusion about who was the real champion.[1]

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."[2]

Gilberto Mendoza from Venezuela has been the President of the WBA since 1982. 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.

In 2014 the WBA approved the creation of the WBA Oceania based in Brisbane Australia. The WBA Oceania's inaugural Committee is President Francisco Martinez, Vice President Damon Locantro, Secretary Derek Milham and Ratings Chairman Ferlin Marsh.


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.[3] In a 1982 interview, the promoter Bob Arum claimed that he had to pay off WBA officials to obtain rankings for his fighters.[4]

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.[citation needed]

Super titles[edit]

The WBA recognizes the title holders from the WBC, WBO, and IBF organizations. The WBA refers to a champion who holds two or more of these titles in the same weight class as an "undisputed champion" or "super champion". This applies even if the WBA title is not one of the titles held by the "undisputed champion".[5][6] In September 2008, Nate Campbell was recognized as lightweight "undisputed champion" for his WBO and IBF titles, while the WBA's own champion was Yusuke Kobori.[7]

If a fighter with multiple titles holds the WBA's title as well, the fighter is promoted to "Super Champion" and the WBA title becomes vacant for competition by other WBA-ranked boxers. As a result, the WBA tables will sometimes show a "WBA Super World Champion" and a "WBA World Champion" for the same weight class, instead of "WBA Champion".[8] The WBA has even been known to recognize three different fighters as one form of champion or another in the very same weight class (Interim, Super and Regular Champion) and there have been occasions where on the same night in two different parts of the world two different WBA "World" Champions are defending their versions of same WBA weightclass titles. This is extremely confusing to boxing fans.

A WBA champion may be promoted to "Super Champion" without winning another organization's title: Chris John, Floyd Mayweather, Jr., and Anselmo Moreno are examples. The WBA will promote their titlist to a "Super" champion when he successfully defends his title five times.[9]

Current WBA world title holders[edit]


Weight class: Champion: Reign began:
Minimumweight South Africa Hekkie Budler March 1, 2014
Light flyweight Japan Ryoichi Taguchi December 31, 2014
Flyweight Mexico Juan Francisco Estrada (Unified Champion) April 6, 2013
Argentina Juan Carlos Reveco November 17, 2012
Super flyweight Japan Kohei Kono March 26, 2014
Bantamweight Dominican Republic Juan Carlos Payano (Super Champion) September 26, 2014
United Kingdom Jamie McDonnell May 31, 2014
Super bantamweight Cuba Guillermo Rigondeaux (Unified Champion) January 20, 2012
United Kingdom Scott Quigg September 5, 2013
Featherweight Jamaica Nicholas Walters (Super Champion) October 18, 2014
Argentina Jesus Cuellar February 21, 2015
Super featherweight Japan Takashi Uchiyama (Super Champion) January 11, 2010
Lightweight Cuba Richar Abril February 28, 2013
Super lightweight United States Danny Garcia (Super Champion) July 14, 2012
United States Jessie Vargas April 12, 2014
Welterweight United States Floyd Mayweather, Jr. (Unified Champion) May 3, 2014
United States Keith Thurman January 16, 2015
Super welterweight United States Floyd Mayweather, Jr. (Super Champion) May 5, 2012
Cuba Erislandy Lara March 13, 2014
Middleweight Kazakhstan Gennady Golovkin (Super Champion) October 14, 2010
United States Daniel Jacobs August 9, 2014
Super middleweight United States Andre Ward (Super Champion) November 21, 2009
United Kingdom Carl Froch May 25, 2013
Light heavyweight Russia Sergey Kovalev (Unified Champion) November 8, 2014
Germany Jürgen Brähmer December 14, 2013
Cruiserweight Russia Denis Lebedev October 30, 2012
Heavyweight Ukraine Wladimir Klitschko (Super Champion) July 2, 2011
Uzbekistan Ruslan Chagaev July 6, 2014


Weight class: Champion: Date won:
Light minimumweight (102 lbs) Japan Ayaka Miyao 16 September 2012
Minimumweight (105 lbs) Mexico Anabel Ortiz 23 July 2013
Light flyweight (108 lbs) Argentina Yesica Bopp 20 June 2009
Flyweight (112 lbs) Germany Susi Kentikian 1 February 2013
Super flyweight (115 lbs) Japan Naoko Fujioka 13 November 2013
Bantamweight (118 lbs) Mexico Irma Garcia 5 January 2013
Super bantamweight (122 lbs) Mexico Jackie Nava 24 May 2014
Featherweight (126 lbs) Dominican Republic Dahiana Santana 28 June 2014
Super featherweight (130 lbs) South Korea Choi Hyunmi 15 August 2013
Lightweight (135 lbs) Uruguay Cecilia Comunales 31 March 2012
Super lightweight (140 lbs) Argentina Ana Laura Esteche 18 January 2014
Welterweight (147 lbs) Norway Cecilia Brækhus 14 March 2009
Super welterweight (154 lbs) United States Layla McCarter 30 September 2012
Middleweight (160 lbs) Bermuda Teresa Perozzi 30 December 2011
Super middleweight (168 lbs) Vacant
Light heavyweight (+168 lbs) Vacant

WBA affiliated organizations[edit]

Transition of WBA titles[edit]


  1. ^ Mullan, Harry (1996). The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Boxing. London, England, UK: Carlton Books. p. 121. ISBN 0-7858-0641-5. 
  2. ^ "Boxing Bodies: A Brief Chronology and Rundown". International Boxing Digest 40 (1): 58. January 1998. 
  3. ^ Heller, Peter (1988). Bad Intentions: The Mike Tyson Story. New York: New American Library. pp. 141–142. ISBN 0-688-10123-2. 
  4. ^ Mullan. The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Boxing. p. 122. 
  5. ^ "Super championships guidelines". WBA. Archived from the original on 2008-06-05. Retrieved 2008-11-14. 
  6. ^ "WBA Super Championships". WBA. Retrieved 2009-02-11. 
  7. ^ "Official Ratings as of September 2008". WBA. September 2008. p. 2. Retrieved 2008-11-14. [dead link]
  8. ^ "Oficial Web Site >> World Boxing Association". Retrieved 2012-06-18. 
  9. ^ Gabriel F. Cordero (November 30, 2012). ""Chocolatito" is the latest WBA super champion". Retrieved 2012-11-30. 

External links[edit]