Lee McGregor European title fight called off as boxing is suspended

Lee McGregor’s European title fight against Karim Guerfi has been postponed once more following a shutdown of professional boxing in Britain due to the rise in coronavirus cases.

Lee McGregor was due to fight Karim Guerfi of France for the European bantamweight title. Picture: SNS
Lee McGregor was due to fight Karim Guerfi of France for the European bantamweight title. Picture: SNS

The Edinburgh bantamweight was due to face the Frenchman for the European Boxing Union title at Production Park Studios in Wakefield, Yorkshire, on January 22. However, the British Boxing Board of Control, the organisation which oversees professional boxing in the UK, has announced a shutdown of all events under its auspices this month.

BBBofC general secretary Robert Smith said: “Following the increase in Covid-19 cases in the United Kingdom and the effects such increases has on the NHS and the work of the board medical officers, it has been decided that no tournaments under the jurisdiction of the British Boxing Board of Control will take place in January 2021.

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“A further review by the board’s medical panel and stewards will take place later in January in relation to tournaments from February onwards.”

McGregor was originally due to fight Guerfi on November 11 before the Scot tested positive for Covid-19.

No new date has been announced for the fight but promoter MTK Global said in a statement: “MTK Global hopes to reschedule the event along with all of the fights on the card as soon as possible.”

The onset of the pandemic led to boxing being suspended from last March until July, and most events since then have taken place behind closed doors.

However, the emergence of a new strain of coronavirus in the UK has seen a rapid elevation in case numbers, with a further 57,725 reported on Saturday.

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