If it felt like a domestic fight too good to be true, it was: Joshua Buatsi vs. Dan Azeez, the all-British light-heavyweight clash set for Saturday (October 21), is now off.
Unfortunately, with just four days to go, doctors have ruled Azeez is unable to compete due to a back injury he suffered in what was his final training session.
“I’m devastated for this to happen on fight week,” said Azeez, 20-0 (13). “It still hasn’t sunk in. I’ve never had to withdraw from a fight in my career before. I want to apologise to all the fans, especially those travelling to the fight. I am also extremely sorry to my opponent Joshua Buatsi, to my promoter and to everyone involved who has worked so hard on this date. I hope this fight can be rescheduled as soon as possible.”
According to BOXXER, the promoter of the event, further details, including ticket information and a revised date for Buatsi-Azeez, will be communicated in due course. All tickets, they say, will automatically remain valid for the rescheduled main event and a full refund will be made available for anyone not able to attend.
“This is a big shock but everyone at BOXXER is working very hard to ensure we provide clarity for all fighters, teams and most importantly the fans as soon as we can,” said BOXXER founder and CEO Ben Shalom. “I know that Dan would do anything to be in the ring on Saturday night and for this to happen at this stage is devastating. This is a huge fight for British Boxing, but the health and safety of our fighters must come first. My heart goes out to Dan and Joshua, who have both completed tough camps, and to the fans, with more than 10,000 having made arrangements to come on Saturday. We will provide an update on the rest of the card and communicate a revised date for Buatsi-Azeez as soon as possible.”