Jerwin Ancajas title unification bout vs Kazuto Ioka shelved; Omicron risk cited

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 04 2021 06:00 PM

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Jerwin Ancajas' world junior bantamweight title unification bout with Kazuto Ioka on New Year's Eve has been called off following Japan's decision to close its doors due to the threat of the COVID-19 omicron variant.

Ancajas was supposed to unify his IBF title with Ioka's WBO belt in Tokyo.

"Team Ancajas was looking forward to this historic fight against Ioka but understands there are bigger concerns than boxing in Japan and the world with the situation caused by the emergence of the latest variant," said Sean Gibbons, president of MP Promotions. 

"We remain committed to making this fight happen as soon as possible in Japan."

Promoted by Shisei Boxing Gym, Manny Pacquiao’s MP Promotions, TGB Promotions and Knucklehead Boxing Promotions, Ancajas-Ioka had the makings of fight of the year.

But because of the global spread of the new Omicron coronavirus variant and Japan's ban on foreign entry, the fight will be moved to 2022. 

This was not the first time Ancajas experienced delays in his fights.

His title defense against Jonathan Rodriguez was postponed twice until they met in April. He defeated the Mexican via unanimous decision.

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