World middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin has been stripped of his IBF title after failing to agree a fight with the federation’s mandatory challenger.
The WBA and WBC champion, 36, was required to fight Sergiy Derevyanchenko before August 3, but no deal has been done.
Kazakh fighter Golovkin claimed the belt in 2015 when he defeated Canada’s David Lemieux.
The IBF said it will identify “two leading contenders” to fight for the now vacant belt.
It said in a statement that Golovkin asked in April not to fight Derevyanchenko because of his May 5 bout with Vanes Martirosyan.
The Martirosyan fight came about after his Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez rematch was postponed when the Mexican failed a drugs test.
The IBF said it agreed to Golovkin’s request so long as he agreed to fight Derevyanchenko by the August deadline..
Recent reports have suggested Golovkin is close to agreeing a fight with Billy Joe Saunders, the WBO belt holder.