Joseph Parker's fight against Dillian Whyte will not be given interim title status, the WBO have confirmed.
It means Parker may be in for a long wait before getting another shot at the WBO title he lost to Anthony Joshua in April.
"Please be advised the WBO does not sanction interim championships except, under extraordinary circumstances which currently, are not present in the heavyweight division," WBO president Paco Valcarcel told
With Parker being the former champion and Whyte ranked at number two by the WBO, it may have made sense for the winner of the fight to be next in line for the title.
But the WBO's decision means the 26-year-old Kiwi's road back to the title may be a lengthy one, with other fighters having claims for Joshua's belt.
The No 1 WBO and WBA ranked Alexander Povetkin is the likely mandatory challenger to take on Joshua next, while Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev – who was forced to pull out of his title fight against Joshua late last year – also still holds claims to getting a shot at the Brit.
But for now, Parker will be focused on Whyte in what will be a monumental heavyweight clash, regardless of its WBO status.
"Every second counts," Parker told the Herald earlier this month, as he gets ready for the bout.
"For this fight, we want to throw lots of combinations. We need to be way busier. He throws a lot of punches and we have to throw a lot so we can catch him."
The fight takes place at the O2 arena in London on July 29.