According to multiple reports in Russia, the next defense for International Boxing Federation (IBF) and World Boxing Council (WBC) light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev is being postponed to the end of January.
"The fight of Artur Beterbiev has been postponed to the end of January," a representative of the athlete's team informed Tass.
Beterbiev was supposed to fight in Moscow on December 11 against German contender Adam Deines.
Initially he was scheduled to make a mandatory defense against Meng Fanlong of China, but the mandatory challenger withdrew due to visa issues.
The 35-year-old Beterbiev has been out of the ring since last October, when he knocked out Oleksandr Gvozdyk to unify the WBC, IBF titles. Beterbiev has a record of 15 victories (all by knockout) and no defeats. The 29-year-old Deines has a record of 19 wins (10 by knockout), one defeat and one draw.
The recent turn of events will also affect the comeback of former "regular" welterweight champion Alexander Besputin of Russia, with further confirmation of the postponement from the Secretary General of the Russian Boxing Federation, Umar Kremlev.
"Besputin's fight has also been postponed to 2021," said the Kremlev.
Besputin was scheduled to fight in the co-featured slot on the Beterbiev-Deines card.
There is no confirmation on whether or not Besputin will remain on the card or fight elsewhere.
Besputin defeated compatriot Rajab Butaev by twelve round decision last December in Monaco, to win the World Boxing Association (WBA) "regular" welterweight title. But then the trouble began when Besputin failed a post-fight doping test - which in turn forced the WBA to strip the Russian boxer of the world title.
The 29-year-old Besputin has a record of 13 wins (9 by knockout), without a single defeat.