Former WBA and WBC super middleweight beltholder Mikkel Kessler has suffered yet another injury-related setback.
Promoter Team Sauerland announced on Tuesday that Kessler (44-2, 33 KOs) “has sustained a hand injury in practice, forcing him to postpone his hotly-anticipated” Nov. 5 clash with WBO beltholder Robert Stieglitz (40-2, 23 KOs) to early 2012.
“This is a major disappointment for me. We’ve had a great preparation, and I was in fantastic shape when I injured my right hand during a routine training session. The doctors advised me that it needs a rest and I can´t fight on November 5,” said the 32-year-old veteran.
“I am very sorry to keep my fans waiting. The good news is that the injury should heal quickly after a little break. I will rest my hand and then get back to training to be fit for Stieglitz early next year.”
Kessler has won two straight bouts since being dethroned as WBA beltholder by Andre Ward (24-0, 13 KOs), including a decision over current WBC titleholder Carl Froch (28-1, 20 KOs) and a sixth-round TKO of Mehdi Bouadla (22-4, 10 KOs) this past June.
In September of last year, Kessler cited an eye injury as his reasons for withdrawing from Showtime’s Super Six World Boxing Classic.
His replacement, former world titleholder Glen Johnson, lost a decision to Froch in June. Ward and Froch will meet for vacant THE RING super middleweight title and Super Six trophy on Dec. 17.
The venue for Kessler-Stieglitz will remain Copenhagen’s Parken Stadium, and all tickets purchased will remain valid, according to a release by Team Sauerland.
“It’s a shame that this big clash of champions has to be postponed. I know how hard Mikkel has worked and how disappointed he is to postpone the original fight date, but we have been through this before,” said promoter Kalle Sauerland.
“We will now speak to our broadcasting partners – TV2 in Denmark, ARD in Germany and Showtime in the U.S. — to find a new date in early 2012 as soon as possible. We will then kick off the new year with a massive show at Parken, with two of the world´s best super-middleweights battling it out.”
Stieglitz has won 10 straight fights, four of them by knockout, since being stopped in the eighth round in March of 2008 by Librado Andrade.
Stieglitz dethroned Karoly Balzsay to gain his title by 11th-round stoppage in August of 2009, and has made four defenses of the belt since.
JONES-MARRONE CRUISERWEIGHT BOUT TO BE TELEVISED
“As the number of networks and telecast platforms across the technological spectrum has increased, I have been looking for new and inventive ways to bring my events to the masses. WealthTV is the latest in a long line of outlets that have come to me seeking to expand audience and market share through world championship prizefights,” said King.
“I see this as a golden opportunity for people across the nation to see fights on WealthTV, just like people saw fights on ABC, CBS and NBC in yesteryear. I hope this is the first of many live boxing telecasts on WealthTV. This is a good thing for boxing fans who can’t be there on the scene but can watch it live on the screen.”
The event will air at a time to be determined on WealthTV, which is available on over 100 cable systems across the country, including Verizon Fios and AT&T U-verse.
WealthTV CEO Robert Herring is pleased his network will telecast its first boxing event on Nov. 5.
“WealthTV has provided compelling programming 24 hours a day since 2004,” said Herring. “Telecasting the Viva Don King world championship boxing card is an honor for us and fits nicely into the programming vision for WealthTV.”
Check at www.WealthTV.com for listings.
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org