World Boxing News thoroughly explains why a heavyweight Alexander Povetkin vs. Dillian Whyte rematch is heading to Gibraltar on Saturday, March 27.
Whyte aimed for a revenge bid against Povetkin on March 6 after being planted by the Russian puncher last year. But travel restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic meant the fight needed a three-week delay.
An official announcement on a new venue will happen in due course.
When the confirmation came over the weekend, Matchroom Sport Managing Director Eddie Hearn said: “In the current environment, we always have to think on our feet.
“We did everything to try and make March 6 happen, but with the new travel restrictions, it was impossible.
“Now we have something outside the box, compelling, and a unique setting for one of the Heavyweight Fights of the Year. Roll on the Rumble on the Rock!”
WBN can now add that Whyte is training in Portugal blighted any chances of the fighter being allowed into the UK without some quarantine.
Portugal is on the red list of 33 countries, meaning even elite sportspersons need to quarantine in a hotel for ten days after arrival.
The official UK Government rules state: “You need to quarantine in a government-approved hotel and take a coronavirus test on day two and day eight if you have been in a country on the travel ban red list in the ten days before you arrive in the UK.”
The Government rules also apply to elite athletes traveling. Therefore, Whyte had no option but to move the fight and push it back.
ALEXANDER POVETKIN vs. DILLIAN WHYTE REACTION
Airing his views on the situation, Povetkin’s promoter Andriy Ryabinskiy spoke exclusively to WBN.
He said: “Of course, this is sad news. But it” s life. We can do nothing about this.
“The pandemic is breaking many plans. Sasha is ready for battle and keeps his physical shape and fighting spirit.
“No matter what date and where the battle takes place, we go there only for victory,” added Ryabinskiy.
The event remains broadcast on Sky Sports Box Office (in the UK) and DAZN in all other markets, excluding the UK and Ireland.
WBN Editor Phil has over ten years of boxing news experience. Follow WBN on Twitter @WorldBoxingNews.