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Klitschko suffers calf injury, off Dec. 10 date

Photo by Naoki Fukuda
Fighters Network

Wladimir Klitschko suffered a “minor” calf injury and is out for the rest of 2016, his manager confirmed to on Monday, capping what has been a disappointing 12 months for the 40-year-old former heavyweight champion.

Klitschko (64-4, 53 knockouts) was locked in talks to fight on Dec. 10 — either against IBF heavyweight titleholder Anthony Joshua or another opponent — possibly for the vacant WBA title, with Lucas Browne rumored to be a leading candidate. But the calf pull, which Klitschko manager Bernd Bonte said was sustained last week, has scuttled those plans and put Klitschko on the shelf. It’s the first time since Klitschko turned pro in 1996 he won’t fight at least once in a given year. Klitschko and Joshua are now targeting to meet in the spring, as long as the WBA allows the bout to be for the championship, the manager said.

“Wladimir picked up a minor muscle injury last week but regardless of that, with just over 6 weeks to go until December 10, it’s unrealistic to put together a title fight in Germany or UK and  give it the full build up it deserves and needs (contracts,  presser, ticket sales and the marketing of our TV partners),” Bonte wrote in an email to “We haven’t heard from the WBA yet. We still hope that the WBA rules in favor of a Joshua vs Klitschko fight and a fight of that magnitude definitely deserves a huge international build up!”

Klitschko was waiting on the WBA to decide whether it would sanction a bout with Joshua in Manchester, England or another fight involving someone else in Germany for the title. Now, the WBA will have to deal with another unforeseen situation with Klitschko’s injury, which was first reported by

Before all this, Klitschko was trying to get Tyson Fury back in the ring for a rematch of their November upset, when Fury won a dull decision to wrest away his titles. But Fury twice pulled out of dates for a second fight in 2016, and he recently vacated the belts, citing depression and issues with cocaine and alcohol.



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