Butler to relinquish IBF bantamweight title and return to super flyweight
Paul Butler (16-0, 8 KOs) will relinquish his IBF bantamweight title and is dropping back down to the super flyweight division.
Butler defeated Stuart Hall last month in Newcastle to win the IBF crown in only his 16th fight as a professional, but after considering a unification clash with Jamie McDonnell, Butler will drop down a division for his next fight.
The Ellesmere Port fighter is moving back down to super flyweight in a bid to write his name into the history books by becoming a two-weight world champ.
“It’s a beautiful belt and it’s hard to relinquish it seeing as it’s the first world title that I’ve won, but I knew that it was always going to be the case if I won it I’d have to return it and go back to down to super-flyweight,” said Butler.
“When the opportunity came to fight Hall for the title I knew that it was a fight that I could win and I grabbed the chance with both hands. To become a world champion in only my 16th fight was an absolute dream come true. Obviously there was a big size difference between me and Hall, but I said to everybody that I could overcome him with my speed and work-rate and that proved to be the case, but I’m a natural 115 pounder.
“Now I aim to win a world title at super-fly and achieve another dream of becoming a two-weight world champion in reverse. Most of the British greats have gone up through the weights like Duke McKenzie, David Haye, Ricky Hatton, Nigel Benn and Chris Eubank to name a few, but only Bob Fitzsimmons has achieved the feat of dropping down a weight and that will be a big incentive for me."
Butler is expected to return to the ring in October and promoter Frank Warren is likely to be working on landing him a shot at one of the super-fly world title holders.
Butler's mandatory challenger Randy Caballero (21-0, 13 KOs) will face an opponent to be determined for the vacant IBF strap. Caballero traveled to Japan and knocked out Kohei Oba in the 8th round in an eliminator in April to become the mandatory challenger for the belt.