LONDON: Britain’s controversial world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury’s title rematch with Ukrainian Wladimir Klitschko has been called off for a second time as the titleholder is “medically unfit to fight”, his camp said.
The 28-year-old champion who sensationally took the title off long-time holder Klitschko last year had already postponed the fight once this year because of an ankle injury.
“It is with the deepest regret that we have to announce that the world heavyweight championship rematch between Tyson Fury and Wladimir Klitschko, scheduled to take place on the 29th October 2016 at the Manchester Arena, will not be going ahead,” a statement read.
“Tyson has, this week, been declared medically unfit to fight.”
The statement did not elaborate on his medical problem, only saying that he would need to undergo medical treatment before resuming training.
“Medical specialists have advised that the condition is too severe to allow him to participate in the rematch and that he will require treatment before going back into the ring,” the statement went on.
“Tyson will now immediately undergo the treatment he needs to make a full recovery.
“Tyson is understandably devastated by the development.”
The title fight seemed to have been cursed from the outset with the ankle problem, then it was revealed Fury had failed a dope test and would have a hearing in front of the United Kingdom Anti-Doping (UKAD) panel although England’s High Court ruled that it should be delayed until November so the bout could go ahead.
The two fighters didn’t even get to meet at the press conference earlier this month as Fury’s car apparently had broken down.
Fury claimed a shock win over Klitschko to take the World Boxing Association, World Boxing Organization and International Boxing Federation belts in a points decision in Duesseldorf last November.
The Englishman agreed to face Klitschko again, which meant he was stripped of the IBF title for failing to face its mandatory challenger.
After the original July bout was called off, it emerged that UKAD had charged Fury over a urine sample taken in February 2015, and his cousin Hughie with a doping offence.
It was alleged the sample taken nine months before his defeat of Klitschko contained traces of the banned substance nandrolone.
Fury was provisionally suspended, but that ban has since been lifted.