Liverpudlian Liam Smith (26-1-1, 14KOs) has had to pull out of his world title fight against current WBO super-welterweight champion Sadam Ali (26-1, 14KOs) due to illness.
Former 154lb belt holder ‘Beefy’ Smith was due to face Ali in Verona, USA on May 12. Unfortunately for the scouser he will be unable to challenge for his former title because his illness has prevented him from training. The 29-year-old is clearly gutted and hopes the fight will be re-scheduled, he said:
“I’m bitterly disappointed that I have been forced to postpone my fight with Sadam Ali to a later date.
”A recent illness has severely impacted on my training schedule, leaving me with no choice but to postpone the May 12 date.
“I’ve been out of training for eight days. We’re not sure exactly what was wrong with me but it appears to be some sort of allergic reaction. I’m not injured and I’m hoping that the fight can be rescheduled quickly.
“I’m gutted for Ali and all of the fans that were looking forward to watching the fight. I’d like to thank Golden Boy promotions and my promoter Frank Warren for working on a new date for the fight.
“Ali is a world class fighter and I need to be fully prepared for when I step in the ring with him. I want to give the fans a fight to remember.”
It does seem like Golden Boy are keeping the May 12 date open and are now seeking a replacement which is not good news for Smith. Many boxing fans are hoping that Kell Brook would take the fight at short notice but to be perfectly honest I think it’s way too short notice for that to happen.
My guess would be that Golden Boy will either select a less than stellar opponent to keep Ali busy to save the card or re-schedule the whole event altogether. The knock on effect is that the WBC super-bantamweight fight between Rey Vargas and Azat Hovhannisyan will have to be re-scheduled also or be promoted to the main event.
I wish Smith a speedy recovery and hope he can get well soon.