WBO super middleweight holder Robert Stieglitz planned defense against George Groves, May 5, in Messehalle, Germany, is off after the challenger from England suffered an unspecified injury.
Unbeaten Groves, 24, sustained the problem while training in Cyprus. It is the second time this year that the British and Commonwealth holder has had to pull out of a scheduled bout. A back injury in February led to his clash against Scotland’s Kenny Anderson being scrapped.
“I have picked up an injury in the build up to this fight. We tried to work through it but soon realised I wouldn’t be able to perform the training needed to prepare for this fight,“ said Groves (14-0, 11 knockouts). “’After coming back to London immediately and seeking medical advice I hope that this problem will be sorted soon and will only be a short delay.
“This is without doubt the toughest decision I have ever had to make, I am gutted – but nothing worth having is given away. It has only made me more determined to achieve my goal of becoming world champion.”
Promoter Frank Warren is certain that WBO mandatory challenger Groves, from west London, will still get his title shot at Russian-born Stieglitz (41-2, 23 KOs) when he returns to full fitness.
“I am bitterly disappointed for George as I was convinced he would have beaten Steiglitz and brought the WBO super middleweight title back to it’s spiritual home,” said the British promoter. “Once George is fit a new date will be rescheduled – as he is the mandatory challenger.”