The World Boxing Super Series was so close to having the first two rounds go without a hitch, but now the last semifinal bout has underwent a major change.
Juergen Braehmer, who is competing in the WBSS’ final four in the super middleweight tournament, is suffering from influenza and will not be able to fight on his scheduled February 24 bout against Callum Smith. The winner of that bout would not only walk away with the WBC Diamond title but also advance to the first-ever World Boxing Super Series finals, which are currently scheduled to take place in London in early June.
“I have been battling a feverish infection since Sunday. Unfortunately, a fight in this state is out of the question. It is not possible for me to go into the ring like this and I would like to apologize to my fans. I was well prepared and looking forward to fighting Callum,” Braehmer said in the press release.
The fight itself has not been canceled and taking Braehmer’s place in the semifinal bout is undefeated Dutch super middleweight Nieky Holzken. Holzken was already been named a reserve fighter in case either Smith or Braehmer is unable to compete before the announcement took place. Holzken was scheduled to face Dmitrii Chudinov on the undercard. Holzken won the vacant BeNeLux super middleweight title last year.
The winner of the second semifinals is currently scheduled to face WBA “super” and IBO champion George Groves, but even the injury bug has hit Groves. Groves suffered a left shoulder injury towards the end of his semifinal bout against Chris Eubank Jr. and now Groves’ status for the finals is uncertain.