By Elliot Foster
Wladimir Klitschko will not fight again this year.
The former heavyweight world champion was set to box on December 10, either in Germany or England, depending on a ruling from the WBA.
Klitschko (64-4, 53 KOs) was waiting on a decision from the Panama-based Boxing Association regarding his next move.
It was believed that if the WBA didn’t sanction a title fight between the aforementioned Ukrainian and IBF champion Anthony Joshua (17-0, 17 KOs) for December 10 at Manchester Arena, exclusively live on Sky Sports Box Office, Showtime and RTL, they would order him to face Lucas Browne of Australia (24-0, 21 KOs) for the vacant ‘regular’ belt.
But it has now been reported by Dan Rafael of ESPN that 40-year-old Klitschko has suffered an injury, which –– according to one source –– is damage to the calf, and that he will now sit out until 2017.
The WBA’s decision on the ruling regarding a fight between Joshua and Klitschko has been pushed back several times in recent days and the boxing public was expecting news to finally be revealed on Monday.
However, it will no longer matter what the organisation has decided as we won’t see the ex-unified ruler in a ring again in 2016.
The Klitschko and Joshua camps remain in talks to put together the fight for the first part of 2017, according to Rafael, with Joshua pencilled in to defend his crown on March 4 at London’s O2 Arena, providing he gets through his set December 10 defence against an opponent to be determined.
Further details will be revealed in due course.