Claressa Shields withdraws from 154-pound title bout due to injury

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Undisputed female middleweight champion Claressa Shields. Photo credit: Stephanie Trapp/Trappfotos

Claressa Shields’ homecoming bout and an attempt to win a major title in a third weight class will have to wait.

Shields withdrew from her August 17 bout against Ivana Habazin due to a knee injury sustained while doing roadwork earlier this week.

The 24-year-old Shields (9-0, 2 knockouts) was scheduled to face Habazin for the vacant WBO junior middleweight title at the Dort Federal Event Center in her hometown of Flint, Michigan. Showtime was to televise the fight.

“There’s nothing I love to do more than boxing and I train hard for all of my fights,” said Shields via press release. “It’s going to be tough for them to keep me out of the gym for a few weeks but I will heal quickly and then go to training camp, so I make history in front of all my fans. I can promise you this – I’ll be training harder than ever soon again and I will provide a spectacular performance and make history for everyone in attendance and for the viewers of Showtime.”

There is no timetable or specific date when Shields would return to the ring. Dmitriy Salita, Shields’ promoter, is working on a date this fall.

“Claressa will bounce back quickly,” said Salita. “Unfortunately training injuries are part of the sport. A great champion like her will take it in stride and move forward to the new fight date we are currently working to finalize. The fight will be rescheduled for the fall and we will announce the new date shortly.”

Shields last fought on April 13, defeating Christina Hammer by unanimous decision to become the undisputed female middleweight champion. Shields also won The Ring Magazine’s world middleweight championship.

Habazin (20-3, 7 KOs) last fought on December 8, defeating Eva Bajic by unanimous decision, in her hometown of Zagreb, Croatia. She has won her last five bouts since losing by third round stoppage to Mikaela Lauren in April of 2016.

 

 

Francisco A. Salazar has written for RingTV.com since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper, BoxingScene.com and FightNights.com. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @FSalazarBoxing.

 

 

 

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