The reasoning behind the International Boxing Federation's (IBF) recent decision to strip Terence Crawford of the welterweight title has been revealed. In the summer of 2023, Terence secured the belt in a match against Errol Spence, but fast forward to November, and Crawford finds himself without the IBF title.
According to reports from BoxingScene, the IBF stripped Crawford's title due to his inability to fulfill a mandatory defense against Jaron Ennis, the "interim" world champion until recently.
While their bout was sanctioned by the IBF, Crawford's inability to face Ennis was attributed to a clause activated by a rematch agreement with Errol Spence:
"On August 25, the IBF sent a letter to Terence's representative, instructing negotiations for a fight with Ennis, with a deadline of September 24. On September 22, the IBF received an email from Crawford's representative, revealing that the agreement for the Spence vs. Terence fight includes a provision for an immediate rematch, which Errol activated. Consequently, Terence cannot engage in negotiations with Ennis," as reported by a representative from BoxingScene.
Additionally, referring to point 3.B in the IBF rules, it's worth noting that the Federation does not endorse clauses about mandatory rematch obligations in contracts:
"No contract for participation in a match should include any clauses or provisions that guarantee or promise any participant participation in a rematch for the championship title if such a clause or provision hinders the mandatory title defense."
By adhering to this point, the IBF stripped Crawford of the championship title and declared Ennis as the rightful champion. The organization has officially confirmed that Terence can no longer be considered the absolute world champion.