The coronavirus continues to rage, and another big-name fighter has unfortunately tested positive – Jorge Linares. Venezuelan Linares, who trains out of Tokyo, Japan, was to have fought Javier Fortuna on August 28th, but that fight is now almost certainly off.
According to reports in Japanese media, Linares is showing no obvious signs of illness, yet his test has indeed come back positive.
The test was done as part of Linares’ pre-fight check-up, and now the former three-time champ will have to rest up, his plans to move ahead and try and become a champion again on hold.
The really bad news is the gym Linares trains at, The Teiken Gym will now have to close its doors until it is cleared to re-open by the local public health center.
As fans know, boxing great Roberto Duran contracted COVID-19, and thankfully “Hands of Stone” made a full recovery in pretty quick time. Former heavyweight contender and world title challenger Derrick Jefferson also got struck down and was hospitalized, but he too made a full recovery, as did current heavyweight contender Travis Kauffman (who fights Otto Wallin in an interesting match-up later this month).
Hopefully, Linares will do the same. Japan is currently seeing a resurgence in COVID cases, and Linares is not the only person to be currently affected.
Linares, 47-5(29), has won two in a row since being stopped by Pablo Cesar Cano in an upset last January, and he was in line for a big fight if he could defeat Fortuna.
Linares’ big goal was to secure a rematch with pound-for-pound king Vasyl Lomachenko, who the 34-year-old pushed pretty hard in a good and exciting fight back in May of 2018 – Linares knocking Loma down before being stopped late on.
Now those plans will have to wait. Above all, let’s just hope Linares makes that full recovery and is able to resume his career in due course. The coronavirus has caused so much trouble already, and unfortunately, it looks as though it will stick around for some time yet.