Tim Tszyu’s first defence of his interim WBO super welterweight title has been thrown into doubt.
Tszyu has been forced to undergo emergency surgery as a result of a dog bite, just twenty days before he was due to defend his WBO interim belt against Carlos Ocampo.
The Australian had been set to fight undisputed champion, Jermell Charlo, earlier in the year until the 154lb king broke his hand, causing the fight to be postponed and it seems that Tszyu’s run of bad luck in 2023 has continued.
After Charlo’s withdrawal, Tszyu, son of hall-of-famer, Kostya, wasted no time and risked his position in the rankings for a fight against Tony Harrison for the WBO interim belt. The ‘soul taker’ secured victory with a ninth-round knockout and applied further pressure for a clash with Charlo, which has now been ordered to take place by September 30th.
Tszyu, not wanting to be out the ring that long, signed to fight former world title challenger, Ocampo on June 18th. Now, disaster has struck, as the 28-year-old was bitten by a dog on Sunday resulting in a trip to the hospital.
However, Fox Sports reports that his manager, Glen Jennings, remains confident the clash with Ocampo will go ahead.
“It’s certainly not the ideal preparation anytime a fighter ends up in hospital a few weeks out from world title fight but the best news right now is that Tim is doing ok.”
“He has the best and most experienced team around him in world boxing. They have reassured me he’ll be more than ready on June 18 to take on Ocampo. If they’re confident, I’m confident.”
Tszyu is scheduled to headline against Ocampo in Queensland, Australia in just three weeks, with Sam Goodman fighting Ra’eese Aleem on the undercard.