The much-anticipated rematch between British rivals David Haye and Tony Bellew has been postponed due to Haye suffering an injury weeks before they were set to meet.
Haye revealed the injury was a freak accident during a conditioning session and that he won't be fit to fight Bellew on December 17 at the O2 Arena in London. Haye released a statement confirming the injury and two possible dates the rematch could take place in 2018.
"I am devastated to announce my much-anticipated rematch against Tony Bellew has been postponed until March 24 or May 5, subject to scheduling. Despite the recent injury rumors, I was in perfect condition with an incredibly strong training camp, currently weighing lighter than I have for more than five years. I couldn't wait to get back in the ring. I was ready to rewrite the ending of the Haye-Bellew saga. Unfortunately, after a freak accident during a stair conditioning session, which I've done with no incident hundreds of times, I lost my footing, slipped, so instinctively grabbed the banister to stop myself toppling down the stairwell. In doing so I somehow managed to damage my bicep in the process. (Monday) afternoon I underwent a procedure to repair it. This was pretty straightforward and my doctor and physiotherapist have no doubt that not only will I make a full recovery but will be able to be back in the gym to start my arm rehabilitation in two weeks."
Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn said the card has been postponed, announcing that ticket holders should visit their point of purchase for a refund or exchange for any new date for the fight, when it becomes announced.
Haye and Bellew fought in March when Bellew won the grudge match. Their feud started last year after Bellew retained his cruiserweight title and entered a shouting match with Haye, who was at ringside for the fight. The buildup to the fight was equally as volatile, with profanities being thrown around to the point that Haye got fined by the British Boxing Board of Control. The rematch would have been Haye's first fight since March as Haye was recovering from an Achilles injury.