Brook and Spence make deal for May 20 in England, avert purse bid
Kell Brook has a deal in place to defend his IBF welterweight title against mandatory challenger Errol Spence Jr. on May 20 in Brook’s hometown of Sheffield, England, IBF Championship Chairman Lindsey Tucker told RingTV.com on Monday.
Both sides sent a written statement to the IBF, indicating a deal has been struck, averting a purse bid scheduled for Tuesday, which has now been canceled, Tucker said. The camps now have 15 days to return the written contracts to the IBF, otherwise a purse bid will be ordered again, Tucker said.
“They tell me they’re going to fight on May 20 in Sheffield, England,” Tucker told RING. “We canceled the purse bid and they have 15 days to get us the signed contracts otherwise we’ll probably go back to the purse bid. We got something in writing from both sides (indicating a deal has been made).”
Brook (36-1, 25 knockouts) toyed with the idea of moving up in weight to 154 pounds after he lost to Gennady Golovkin last September by a fifth-round stoppage. Spence (21-0, 18 KOs) has won two eliminators to get this opportunity.
“We’re very pleased by this,” Tucker said of the news of the deal. “I’m kind of happy it didn’t go to purse bid. I was happy because I heard all these rumors about Brook and Amir Khan, which if they had fought, it wouldn’t have been for our title because we would have had to take Brook’s title if he decided not to fight Spence. So I’m happy he’s going to fight Spence now. Whatever he and Khan decide to do down the road — I could care less.”
The bout is one of the best that can be made, pitting a highly regarded champion in Brook against Spence, who many believe has the tools to become a future star in the sport and could be the best in a loaded welterweight division. Brook will get a chance to show he’s still an elite boxer after the beating he took at the hands of Golovkin while Spence can prove that all the hype that’s followed him has been warranted.