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Nav Mansouri Withdraws From Liam Smith Title Fight

By Shaun Brown

Boxing Scene has been informed that Navid Mansouri 13-1-2 (4) has pulled out of his challenge for Liam Smith’s British light middleweight title on Jul 26 due to a back injury. The bout was part of a stacked undercard which is headlined by the British heavyweight title rematch and world title eliminator between Tyson Fury 22-0 (16) and Dereck Chisora 20-4 (13) at the Phones 4U Arena in Manchester.

Mansouri, the English champion at 154lbs, would have been contesting a Lonsdale belt for the very first time in a professional career which began in 2009. Smith 16-0-1 (6), who would’ve been making the second defence of his title, will be hoping a replacement can be found quickly having not fought since last December’s fourth round stoppage against Mark Thompson due to a hand injury.

And earlier today, news broke on Twitter that the show had taken an initial blow with British super featherweight champion Gary Sykes 27-3 (6) being forced to pull-out of the first defence of his title against Liam Walsh 15-0 (10). Sykes had a hand operation on Wednesday after sustaining an injury when winning the title against Jon Kays last month. After two previous postponements, the much anticipated Sykes-Walsh dust-up seems destined to never happen.

Derry Mathews 35-9-2 (19) who was scheduled to defend his British lightweight title against Terry Flanagan 24-0 (8) on the Jul 26 bill also took to Twitter to dismiss speculation that he was avoiding the unbeaten Mancunian by saying “People say am avoiding Flanagan have a word with yourself, have got a perforated ear I can’t pass a medical any time soon”. With a month to go, this is another fight that looks in jeopardy of not happening.

Please send news and views to [email protected] or @shaun_brown on Twitter.

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