Vet Glen won’t quit

(CMC) Jamaica’s former world champion, Glen Johnson, is now in pole position for a major title fight after the World Boxing Council confirmed him as the mandatory challenger for the light-heavyweight title.

The WBC confirmed recently at its 46th annual convention in Chengdu, China, that Johnson, 39, is now in line for their 175-pound belt.

He has been confirmed as the mandatory challenger to the winner of the upcoming bout between champion Adrian Diaconu of Romania and the Italian challenger, Silvio Branco.

No date has yet been decided on Diaconu’s defence against Branco.

Canada-based Diaconu, who represented Romania at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, is undefeated in 25 bouts and Branco has a ring record of 55 wins (34 knockouts) against eight losses and two draws.

Johnson’s manager Henry Foster is confident Johnson will beat any winner of the fight.

‘Oh yes, he be beat any of them. He is the best light-heavyweight in the world,’ he said..

Johnson, a former International Boxing Federation champion and World Fighter of the Year, had declared recently that he wants another world title opportunity before he retires.

After a fluent fourth-round technical knockout win over American Aaron Norwood last month, Johnson said he was not ready to give up on boxing and wanted ‘another opportunity to walk away a champion’.

Johnson turns 40 in January. His win over Norwood was his first outing since April when he suffered a controversial points decision loss to WBC champion Chad Dawson in Tampa.

Many ringsiders believe Johnson won that bout but all the judges scored it 116-112 for the young champion, a decision that brought a shower of boos from the fans at the St Pete Times Forum.

Dawson subsequently relinquished the WBC belt – by turning his back on a mandatory title defence against Diaconu – to tackle fellow American Antonio Tarver for the IBF title, which he won easily on a unanimous points decision.

Johnson, who has a ring record of 48 wins (33 knockouts) against 12 losses and two draws, won the World Fighter of the Year Award in 2004 when he defeated Britain’s Clinton Woods in February to claim the IBF title and also beat Tarver and Roy Jones in big-money contests later in the year.