Jamie McDonnell has failed in his appeal against the IBF’s decision to strip him of his world bantamweight title.
The IBF vacated the title last week after McDonnell failed to return his contract for a mandatory defence - due next month - by the deadline.
Top promoter Eddie Hearn immediately appealed the decision but McDonnell last night was informed that the objection had failed.
IBF president Daryl Peoples told The Star: “We have upheld the decision based on the ruling made on October 15.
“We found, under strict IBF rules, there were no grounds for appeal from Jamie.”
Peoples added the two next contenders will now be approached. They are mandatory challenger Vusi Malinga and Stuart Hall, managed by McDonnell’s former manager Dennis Hobson.
Just hours before the decision was announced, McDonnell issued an emotive statement directed at the IBF.
He said: “I firmly believe that a boxer wins a title in the ring and should only lose a title in the ring. I have dedicated my entire life to becoming a champion and winning your presitigious title was the greatest moment of my life.
“To have this taken away from me, particularly in these circumstances has left me shattered. I just don’t think it’s fair to take away my career and livelihood when I have been treated in such a way.”
McDonnell alleges he did not see the contract for a mandatory defence against Malinga until after the IBF’s deadline. He revealed the contract stated he would defend the title on November 9 at Leeds Arena for $50,000, a sum he labelled derisory for a world title defence.
To read the full statement, visit www.thestar.co.uk.