Frank Warren confirmed that Callum Johnson has Covid-19 and will not challenge WBO light-heavyweight champion Joe Smith Jr. this month.
Releasing a statement, Warren said: “Callum Johnson has been forced to pull out of next week’s World Light-Heavyweight title challenge against Joe Smith after testing positive for COVID.
“Johnson had been due to challenge American WBO World champion Smith in Verona, New York on Saturday, January 15.
“His Hall of Fame promoter Frank Warren says he is “gutted” for the Boston man and promised to get Johnson’s career back on track at the earliest opportunity.
He added: “There was Covid in the family, and then he told us that he had to isolate, but then he went down with it. I’m gutted for Callum as he trained very hard.”
Devastated that @CallumTheOne has had to withdraw from the fight, we wish him a speedy recovery. ????
— Frank Warren (@frankwarren_tv) January 6, 2022
Meanwhile, Kash Farooq has been forced to retire at the age of 26 due to ‘unforeseen circumstances’ believed to be medical issues.
Matchroom Boxing stated: “Our well wishes are with Kash Farooq, who has, unfortunately, had to retire due to unforeseen circumstances.
“No doubt he was destined for World honors. A brilliant fighter and top man. Kash will now take up a role as Head of Talent for St Andrews SC.”
Our well wishes are with @kashfarooq who has unfortunately had to retire due to unforeseen circumstances.
No doubt was destined for World honours. A brilliant fighter and top man ????
— Matchroom Boxing (@MatchroomBoxing) January 6, 2022
Former world champion Alex Arthur joined Matchroom in offering condolences to fellow-Scot Farooq on his early step-away.
“Devastated to hear the news, the unbelievable Kash Farooq has had to retire from boxing,” said Arthur.
“I’m sure he was going to go on to become one of Scotland’s greatest ever. A skill set like what we see coming from the midwest in the USA.”
— Teofimo Lopez (@TeofimoLopez) January 5, 2022
Finally, ex-lightweight king, Teofimo Lopez confirmed his intentions to move up to 140 pounds, potentially for his next fight.
When Top Rank asked for New Year predictions for 2022, Lopez responded with a vow to dominate at 140.
“I will become UNDISPUTED again but at Junior Welterweight! #TheTakeover,” said the Las Vegas-based fighter.
Furthermore, Josh Taylor currently holds all the belts in that division.
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