The World Boxing Super Series, a new annual elimination tournament featuring some of the sport’s top fighters and a $50m (€45.8m) prize fund, will launch with contests across the cruiserweight and super middleweight divisions, it has been announced.
Organisers Comosa have outlined further plans for the series following the announcement of its launch in March. The divisions were not decided at the time and it was thought that junior middleweight was being favoured alongside super middleweight. However, Comosa, a newly-formed Swiss company comprising owners from agencies such as Highlight Event & Entertainment and Team Sauerland, and broadcaster Modern Times Group, has opted to utilise the cruiserweight division.
In each weight class, eight fighters will compete in a bracket-style elimination tournament. The last man standing will receive the Muhammad Ali Trophy.
Richard Schaefer, Comosa’s chairman of the Americas, said: “The cruiserweights and super-middleweight have time and time again thrown up thrilling contests – but nobody has ever pitted the top fighters against each other in a fan-friendly, easy-to-understand way within a short period of time. Our revolutionary KO tournament will take less than a year and deliver the crème de la crème in these weights with a blend of past, present and future from the world’s finest fighters.”
The tournament will kick off in September, with four quarter-finals per division. The semi-finals will be held in early 2018, and the winners will be crowned in May 2018. A special boxer selection process has also been put in place to determine the contestants for season one.
On May 15, tournament enrolment will commence where all WBA, WBC, WBO and IBF champions, as well as all top 15 world-ranked contenders, can make their application to enter the tournament through to a deadline of May 26.
All applicants will be verified and evaluated by Comosa’s sports division. The Comosa board will then contract eight fighters per weight class as well as potential back-ups. In early July, Comosa will stage an official presentation gala in Monte Carlo to publicly announce all 16 participants and determine the draw. The four top seeds will select their quarter-final opponents from the four unseeded boxers in a live TV show.
“We have an exciting format, two exciting divisions and now we will sign exciting fighters,” Kalle Sauerland, Comosa’s chief boxing officer, said. “These weights give a great opportunity for us to deliver a huge geographic spread. On top of that, I can imagine some current champions and challengers in the weights around the two, for examples light heavyweights making steps up or down to join the quest for the Ali Trophy.”