WBO middleweight champion Savannah Marshall will now defend her crown against four-time world title challenger Maria Lindberg on the Conor Benn-Samuel Vargas bill at the Copper Box Arena at the weekend.

Marshall (9-0, 7 KOs) was originally scheduled to face Belgian Femke Hermans, who was forced to withdraw after a member of her team tested positive for Covid-19.

Sweden’s Lindberg (19-6-2, 10 KOs & 1 NC) has been drafted in at the last moment and brings plenty of top-level experience, having lost decisions to Christina Hammer (twice), Ewa Piatkowska and Marie Eve Dicaire in world title fights.

The 44-year-old from Malmo has never been stopped in an 18-year career.

Hartlepool’s Marshall won the WBO belt with a seventh-round stoppage over Scot Hannah Rankin in October.

Photo: Dave Thompson/Matchroom Boxing.