Abner Mares accepts rematch

Count bantamweight titlist Abner Mares in for a rematch with Joseph Agbeko.

Frank Espinoza, the manager for the newly crowned 118-pound titleholder, told ESPN.com on Thursday that Mares will accept an IBF-ordered rematch with Agbeko, who lost his title in their controversial fight Saturday night.

"We respect the IBF ruling and understand it," Espinoza said. "It's the right call for Abner. He wants to clear up any doubts about what took place on Saturday night. A rematch is the right thing for Abner, it's the right thing for Agbeko, who fought a great fight, and it's the right thing for boxing. Team Mares and our promoter, Golden Boy, look forward to clearing up any questions that remain in the rematch."

Mares (22-0-1, 13 KOs) claimed the belt on a majority decision against Agbeko (28-3, 22 KOs) in an all-action fight at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. However, the result was clouded in controversy over the action -- and inaction -- of referee Russell Mora, whose rulings seemingly cost Agbeko his title.

Mora's most controversial call came in the 11th round when he ruled a knockdown against Agbeko, although replays showed Mares' punch was clearly an illegal shot to the groin, one of the dozens of low blows Mares threw in the bout.

Mora also called a questionable knockdown against Agbeko in the first round when it looked like he went down because of a slip. And then there were the repeated low blows throughout the bout from Mares. Although Mora issued several warnings, he never deducted any points.

On Tuesday, the IBF announced it had reviewed the video of the bout and ordered an immediate rematch that must take place by Dec. 14.

In its order, the IBF said that it had mandated the rematch because "inappropriate conduct by the referee affected the outcome of the fight."

It will be up to Golden Boy, Agbeko promoter Don King and Showtime, which televised the bout -- the final of its four-man bantamweight tournament -- to figure out the particulars, but Espinoza said Mares looks forward to participating.

"Abner just wants to clear up any doubts and show that he is the champion," Espinoza said. "It was a great fight and Agbeko put up a great fight. So did Abner. So a rematch is the right thing for boxing and we are certainly open to it."

Dan Rafael covers boxing for ESPN.com. Follow him on Twitter.