Kostya Tszyu Injured

16.01.04 - Statement issued by Mr Matthew Watt of Sports Management Australia regarding the postponement of Kostya Tszyu vs. Sharmba Mitchell II: "It is with considerable regret that based on medical advice received yesterday I am today announcing the postponement of Kostya Tszyu’s rematch with Sharmba Mitchell, which was to have been held in Moscow on February 7. During a training session this week at the Tszyu Boxing Academy in Rockdale, Kostya sustained an injury to his shoulder...

"The injury was assessed by Australia’s leading shoulder surgeon, Professor David Sonnabend at Sydney’s Royal North Shore hospital. Sonnabend found that the injury would require surgery, leading to a postponement of the fight. The surgical procedure will be undertaken this Saturday 17th January.

"The injury, in the word’s of Professor Sonnabend 'could have happened to anybody', and is in no way a function of age. He stated, 'Kostya Tszyu is an extraordinarily strong man for his size. Although this will set him back some months, the shoulder will recover completely to its former capacity'.

"Needless to say, Kostya is devastated by this outcome.

"He has been training extremely hard for several months, and had every confidence of retaining his WBC, WBA and IBF super lightweight titles. His preparation for the bout was proceeding ahead of schedule and Kostya and his whole team had been looking forward to departing for Moscow next week. It is also particularly disappointing for Kostya because this would have been his first professional fight in Russia, his country of birth. Additionally, it would have been the first ever sanctioned world title defense to be held in Moscow.

"It is too early to indicate revised dates for the match however the combination of surgery and rehabilitation, along with specific fight preparation, will result in a postponement of some months.

"The promoters, television networks broadcasting the event, boxing sanctioning bodies and Sharmba Mitchell’s management have all been advised of this unfortunate news.

"As disappointing as this outcome is for Kostya, he remains totally committed to 'resuming training following a successful operation this weekend, and a period of rehabilitation'.

"Kostya, as always, is appreciative of the support he has received from his team, management and support staff, and of course his legion of fans in Australia, Russia and throughout the world.

"Kostya Tszyu is resting at home in preparation for corrective surgery that will be undertaken this weekend, and will not be available for comment."

The event promoter, Mr Vlad Warton, stated this afternoon:

“I am most disappointed with the unfortunate and untimely injury Kostya Tszyu has suffered in training for his February 7th engagement. Whilst, initially it was thought to be a minor injury, our worst fears were realised, when a specialist examined Kostya yesterday and confirmed that he would require immediate corrective surgery to repair the injury. However, the good news is Kostya is expected to make a full and speedy recovery. This is the second postponement of this highly anticipated and long awaited rematch and only the second such postponement in Kostya Tszyu’s professional career.

“I have spoken to Mr. Jay Larkin of Showtime Network Inc, he expressed his concerns for Kostya’s health and wellbeing and agreed to reschedule the bout to be staged in Moscow on a later date to be announced.

“I wish to express my most sincere regrets to Kostya’s and Sharmba’s fans around the world for any inconvenience caused to them by the delay of this bout.

“I would also wish to thank Showtime Network Inc for their immeasurable and continuing support of Kostya Tszyu, my Russian partners and Co-promoters of this event Football Tourist Agency and event sponsors for their kind understanding and support, as well as, hundreds of people and Team Members who have worked diligently and tirelessly towards making this event possible in Moscow. A very special expression of gratitude to the WBC’s Vice President and our dear friend Mr. Edmund Lipinski for his enormous long term contribution. Looking forward to seeing you all in Moscow.”

Article posted on 16.01.2004

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