Unable to recover from the back injury that he suffered in training, Liam Smith has announced Wednesday afternoon that he won’t be ready to rematch Chris Eubank Jr. on the rescheduled date of July 1st. So, he and promoter Boxxer have announced the bout is off, altogether, with the hope that they can fight later this year.
Sky Sports in England had more on the decision by Smith to wait and let his back heal further and not fight Eubank Jr. on July 1st,
BREAKING 🚨: Liam Smith postpones his rematch with Chris Eubank Jr to later in 2023 to allow a full recovery from a nagging injurypic.twitter.com/CVxoU4Qcfq
— Sky Sports Boxing (@SkySportsBoxing) May 24, 2023
Smith is quoted in their item as saying,
“I’ve always said a fully-fit Liam Smith beats Chris Eubank Jr every day of the week and twice on Sunday. I tried training through it because I didn’t want to let anyone down but my team have decided to withdraw me following the latest medical assessment,” Smith said Wednesday.
“I’ll heal up now and then the fully-fit Liam Smith will be back later this year to give Chris his second beating.”
Boxxer intends to go ahead with the card, televised by Sky Sports on July 1st with Savannah Marshall’s undisputed super middleweight title fight against Franchon Crews-Dezurn moving into the main event slot.
Smith scored the upset
As for the 34 year old Smith, who previously lost world title challenges to Jaime Mungia in 2017 and Canelo Alvarez nearly eight years ago, he scored the upset of Eubank Jr. back on January in a Boxxer Promtions main event in Liverpool.
Smith caught Eubank Jr. with a huge uppercut in the fourth round and eventually dropped him. With the Liverpool crowd roaring, Smith finished the fight by tagging Eubank Jr. with several more shots and the referee stepped in for the TKO.
At 33-3, 20 KOs, Smith is very much in the title picture in the wide open middleweight division.
As for Eubank, 32-3-1, he exercised the immediate rematch clause back in early February and will now have to wait until later this year, if at all in 2023, for a chance to redeem himself. Eubank Jr. is the son of a prominent and huge fan favorite world champ from the 1990s.