WBA super bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux (16-0, 10 KOs) will fight British contender James “Jazza” Dickens (22-1, 7 KOs) on July 16 at the Cardiff Ice Arena in Cardiff, Wales.
Two-time Olympic gold medalist Rigondeaux, who recently had his WBA belt returned to him after initially being stripped, had been due to fight Dickens in a non-title bout in March in England but he failed to secure a visa.
Now Dickens challenges the Cuban star with the world title on the line.
Carl Frampton vacated the 122-pound belt to move up in weight to challenge WBC featherweight champion Leo Santa Cruz on July 30 rather than fight Rigondeaux, the “Champion in recess.” at the time.
Rigondeaux said: “I am excited to announce my next fight against Jazza Dickens in the UK on July 16. I look forward to seeing all of the great fans of the sport in the UK and giving them an unforgettable performance. It’s unfortunate this fight could not happen sooner as planned but thanks to my team, we are now prepared to put on a great show.
“I would like to thank Dickens for being a warrior, stepping up and getting in the ring, as there are not many who are courageous enough to do so. Many fighters like Carl Frampton would rather vacate their titles than face me in the ring.”
Dickens is the reigning British super bantamweight champion and has won all of his last six fights. His only defeat came against Kid Galahad in 2013 but he will be taking a huge step up in the level of opposition.
Dickens said: “People have already told me that I have no chance of beating him but when I look in another man’s eyes I can see he’s just the same as me. I’m a man and he’s a man, we both feel courage and we both feel fear. On the night we’ll be stepping in the ring as equals and I believe I have what it takes to beat him. I wouldn’t have taken the fight if I didn’t.
“I’ve always said things happen for a reason and this proves it. It was disappointing the fight didn’t go ahead last time but this time it’s for a world title. I’m extremely grateful for the opportunity. Fights like this don’t come around every day so I’ve grabbed it with both hands. It’s been my childhood dream to be the best in the world and this to me is a golden opportunity to become the best by beating Rigondeaux.”