A two-belt world championship match-up set for February 1st has been postponed due to the ongoing Coronavirus crisis in China.
Set to be staged in Hainan next month, Jose Ramirez vs Viktor Postol will now take place at a later date. The venue is now likely to be the USA.
The current situation, which is being monitored by the World Health Organization, has seen a deadly strain of flu take the lives of several people.
Spreading to the United States and the United Kingdom, officials are battling to contain the easily contractible disease.
It’s reported that millions of people have been quarantined in Wuhan, where the virus originated. Plus the surrounding areas covering several cities.
Precautions are also being taken in every country which has had connecting flights to the region.
Releasing a statement on the tasty super-lightweight battle, organizers Top Rank said the following: “Jose Ramirez’s WBC/WBO junior welterweight world title defense against former world champion Viktor “The Iceman” Postol has been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak in China.
“It was originally scheduled to be broadcast live on ESPN from Mission Hills Haikou in Hainan, China on Saturday, Feb. 1.
“The Ramirez-Postol bout will be contested at a date and venue to be determined.”
Top Rank Chairman Bob Arum added: “The health and safety of our fighters and everyone working on the event is the most important thing.
“We hope the situation is brought under control soon. We look forward to staging events at Mission Hills Haikou in the very near future.”
The delay will have a knock-on effect for new Top Rank signing Josh Taylor. The Scot had hoped to face the winner of Ramirez vs Postol over the summer.
Taylor is due to make his debut under Arum’s banner soon. The WBSS winner may now have to wait a little longer to meet Ramirez or Postol in a four-title battle.