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Tim Tszyu recovering from dog bite, June 18 date with Carlos Ocampo still on

Tim Tszyu (Photo courtesy of No Limit Boxing)
Fighters Network

Not even a dog bite could get in the way of Tim Tszyu’s return to the ring.

The unbeaten junior middleweight contender required emergency surgery over the weekend after suffering a dog bite, Saturday afternoon, near his home of Rockdale, Australia, a suburb of Sydney.

According to Ben Damon, who covers boxing for Fox Sports Australia, Tszyu was at a barbeque when he was bitten by a friend’s dog. The bite opened a cut on the back of Tszyu’s right forearm.

The injury could put Tszyu’s clash against Mexico’s Carlos Ocampo in jeopardy. The fight will take place on Sunday, June 18, at Gold Coast Convention Centre, in Broadbeach, Australia. The fight will air live on pay-per-view throughout Australia and on Showtime, in the United States, on Saturday night.

There is no word on the extent of the injury, which could hamper Tszyu’s preparation for the Ocampo fight. An option could be to postpone the fight but Tszyu’s team has been briefed by a medical team that Tszyu could go through with it.

“The wound was superficial,” Glenn Jennings told Nick Walshaw of Fox Sports Australia. “The post-surgical report is all good.

“There is no doubt that Tim will be ready and 100-percent healthy and focused to take on Carlos Ocampo on June 18.”

George Rose, CEO of No Limit Boxing, which promotes Tszyu, is also confident Tszyu will see action against Ocampo.

“Like everyone, I was shocked and worried when I first heard the news,” said Rose. “It’s certainly not the ideal preparation anytime a fighter ends up in a hospital a few weeks out from [an interim] world title fight but the best news right now is that Tim is doing OK.

“He has the best and most experienced team around him in world boxing. They have reassured me he’ll be more than ready on June 18 to take on Ocampo.”

Tim Tszyu (left) vs. Tony Harrison (Photo courtesy: No Limit Boxing)

Tim Tszyu (left) vs. Tony Harrison (Photo courtesy: No Limit Boxing)

Tszyu (22-0, 16 knockouts), who is ranked No. 1 by The Ring at 154 pounds, most recently fought on March 12, stopping former titleholder Tony Harrison in the ninth round. In his previous fight on March 26 of last year, Tszyu overcame a knockdown to defeat Terrell Gausha by unanimous decision. He is the son of former undisputed junior welterweight champion Kostya Tszyu.

Originally Tszyu was scheduled to face The Ring Magazine and undisputed junior middleweight champion Jermell Charlo, on January 28, but the fight was postponed after Charlo suffered an injury to his hand during training camp about a month before the fight.

In his most recent appearance, Ocampo (35-2, 23 KOs), who resides in Ensenada, Mexico, stopped Mauricio Gutierrez Castor in the fifth round. Gutierrez Castor entered the bout unbeaten at 7-0 (5 KOs) but was overmatched by Ocampo.

In his previous fight on October 8, Ocampo lost by unanimous decision to contender Sebastian Fundora. Ocampo’s other defeat as a pro came in June 2018, at 147 pounds, losing by first round knockout to Errol Spence Jr.

The June 18 card did see a cancellation over the weekend as Liam Wilson (11-2, 7 KOs) of Australia had to pull out of his clash against Mexico’s Eduardo Ramirez (27-3-3, 12 KOs), due to an injury suffered in training camp. Wilson most recently fought on February 3, losing by stoppage to Emanuel Navarrete, who won the vacant WBC junior lightweight title.

In the co-feature bout, junior featherweight contender Ra’eese Aleem (20-0, 12 KOs), who now resides in Las Vegas, will face Australia’s Sam Goodman (14-0, 7 KOs) in an IBF title elimination bout.

Francisco A. Salazar has written for The Ring since October 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper. He can be reached at [email protected]. You can also follow Francisco on Twitter @FSalazarBoxing.