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Buatsi vs Azeez postponed due to injury in ‘final training session’

Joshua Buatsi’s fight with Dan Azeez has been cancelled on four days’ notice, after the latter sustained an injury in the final session of his training camp.

The unbeaten Britons were set to put their friendship aside and meet in a light-heavyweight bout on Saturday (21 October), headlining at the O2 Arena in London.

However, the fight has been postponed due to Azeez suffering a back injury, it was announced on Tuesday (17 October).

Azeez, 34, said: “I’m devastated for this to happen on fight week. 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.”

Meanwhile, Boxxer chief Ben Shalom said: “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.

“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.”

Azeez last fought in July, bearing Khalid Graidia on points, two months after 30-year-old Buatsi outpointed Pawel Stepien.

On Wednesday (18 October), Boxxer announced that the undercard would remain intact and take place at London’s York Hall, headlined by Mikael Lawal vs Isaac Chamberlain.