Andy Lee’s much anticipated WBO middleweight title defence will now take place in Manchester on October 10.
Limerick’s Lee had hoped and planned to defend his title in his home town, but a proposed September 19 Thomond Park defence has fallen through.
Both Lee’s manager and trainer Adam Booth and Frank Warren claim ticket sales suggested the clash was set for a 33,000 sell out but a virus has slowed the champions training and their were fears he wouldn’t be at peak fitness come September 19.
As a result the 160lbs title fight had to be pushed back a month and Thomond in October just wasn’t feesible.
The fight has now been moved to the MEN Arena in Manchester and will go ahead on October 10.
Promoter Warren confirmed details of the Manchester event, stating: “It’s a shame for Andy Lee that his dream of defending his world title in Limerick cannot be fulfilled now, but this being such a big fight neither boxer can risk going into the ring at anything less than 100%. Also, from Billy Joe Saunders’ point of view he is in training camp in Spain and to not have a firm date for the fight would not be fair on him so Manchester is the best solution.
“I’m sure it will sell-out with such a huge card taking shape. I’m proud to have staged the top three boxing events at the Arena and I think this one could certainly equal or surpass those,” said Warren.