By Per Ake Persson
Fres Oquendo (37-8, 24KOs) has, according to the Sparkassen Arena in Kiel (Germany), pulled out of the fight against WBA "regular" heavyweight champ Ruslan Chagaev (34-2-1, 21KOs) due to illness.
The fight was set for October 17 at the Sparkassen Arena in Kiel (Germany). All tickets are refunded.
The fighters first met last July with Chagaev winning a close majority decision. Controversy and lawsuits following the contest. Oquendo claimed he was never paid for the contest. Chagaev's promoter claimed Oquendo failed a post-fight drug test.
Eventually the WBA ordered an immediate rematch with the winner facing mandatory challenger Lucas Browne. The two sides were able to reach a deal for the now canceled October date.
Where Oquendo's withdrawal leaves everything is going to be interesting in the coming weeks and depends on whether or not the WBA will now insist that Browne gets his shot first.