Magomed Kurbanov and Patrick Teixeira are once again stuck in a holding pattern.
The intriguing junior middleweight has suffered its second postponement, as the March 26 show it was due to headline has been canceled. German Titov, lead event promoter confirmed with BoxingScene.com that the show will not proceed, though unable to provide an update on when it will be rescheduled.
The show was in jeopardy once the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian War prompted the WBA, WBC, IBF, WBO and IBO to take a firm stance regarding its sanctioning of upcoming fights. All five organizations have ceased lending its approval of any fight currently scheduled in Russia during the nation’s ongoing invasion of neighboring Ukraine.
The upcoming junior middleweight clash between Kurbanov and Teixeira unfortunately checked off every box, in addition to taking three months later than originally intended to be the case. The show is currently scheduled to take place March 26 at KRK Uralets in Ekaterinburg, Russia, and with the WBO International junior middleweight title at stake. The bout was due to take place December 11, only for Kurbanov to withdraw due to breaking out with a fever after the weigh-in and unable to proceed.
Kurbanov-Teixeira is one of four bouts on the card previously carrying either WBA or WBO sanctioning, including secondary WBA cruiserweight titlist Ryad Merhy (30-1, 25KOs) of Belgium and Russia’s 2016 Olympic Gold medalist Evgeny Tishchenko (9-1, 6KOs). The WBA withdrew its sanctioning of the fight and no longer recognizes Tishchenko by name in its current ranking, with his slot replaced by “Not Rated” for the name and “#nowar” for the country.
To date, none of the fighters on the March 26 show have spoken out in favor of the war—an action that will be met with removal from the WBA rankings according to its eight-point Pursuit of Peace mandate handed down Monday. The sanctioning body will cease allowing unranked Russian boxers to enter the rankings, as well as denying its sanctioning of any fights in Russia or Belarus during this time of conflict. The organization has also called for Russian fighters to not fly or display its national flag, refer to the country by name or have its national anthem performed.
The ruling is in line with similar sanctions imposed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), who initially banned all Russian athletes from participating in the delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics last summer. A loophole softened that stance, though on the condition that said athletes enter under the banner of ROC—Russian Olympic Committee, though which couldn’t even be spelled out during the Games, as the representation was limited to the acronym itself.
Kurbanov (22-0, 13KOs) has not fought since a disputed 12-round win over England's Liam Smith last May, at the very venue due to host the March 26 show. Brazil's Teixeira (31-2, 22KOs) aims to rebound following his unanimous decision defeat to Brian Castano last February 13, which ended his WBO junior middleweight title reign.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox