TOKYO (AFP) – Boxing legend Floyd Mayweather’s exhibition struggle in Tokyo this month has been postponed due to coronavirus restrictions, organisers introduced on Friday (Feb 5).
Retired former champion Mayweather, 43, was scheduled to struggle in opposition to an unnamed opponent at Tokyo Dome on Feb 28, however organisers pulled the plug with Japan’s borders closed to nearly all overseas arrivals.
Tokyo and different components of Japan are underneath a virus state of emergency that is set to end on March 7, with attendance at sports activities occasions restricted to five,000 or half capability, whichever is much less.
Mayweather’s fight against YouTuber Logan Paul, which was scheduled for Feb 20, was additionally postponed final week.
The American, who fought a Japanese kickboxer in a broadly ridiculed 2018 exhibition in Japan, mentioned he hopes the Tokyo Dome occasion, dubbed “Mega 2021”, may be rescheduled “throughout the yr”.
“Japan at present has a rise in coronavirus infections, and I heard that foreigners aren’t allowed into the nation,” he mentioned in feedback supplied by organisers in Japanese.
“So it is actually disappointing, however there isn’t any manner I can struggle in Japan on February 28. After I’m allowed into Japan, and if Mega will get a brand new date and a venue, and if they offer me an opponent, I may be able to struggle any time.”
Organisers had mentioned the occasion would characteristic “champion-class” fighters however gave no additional particulars, together with on the foundations for the fights.
“I am praying that we are able to beat the coronavirus and return to a world that is loopy about sports activities,” mentioned Mayweather.
A legend within the boxing world with an unbeaten 50-0 document, Mayweather was final coaxed out of retirement to struggle Japanese Combined Martial Arts star Tenshin Nasukawa in December 2018.
Mayweather floored the Japanese fighter – lower than half his age – 3 times within the first spherical earlier than Nasukawa’s coach rushed in to cease the struggle.
Mayweather hinted on-line that he earned US$9 million (S$12 million) for the two-minute struggle.