MONTREAL â€” The planned International Boxing Federation elimination bout between Artur Beterbiev of Montreal and Sullivan Barrera is off.
Promoter Yvon Michel said Thursday that the Cuban-born Sullivan (18-1) pulled out of the fight, which was scheduled for April 21 in Miami. The bout was to decide the mandatory challenger to IBF light heavyweight champion Andre Ward.
“Sullivan Barrera never signed his contract and never wanted to face Beterbiev despite is public statements,” Michel said in a release. “Whatever reasons he can come up with, the truth is he’s scared of Beterbiev.”
Michel said he would ask the IBF to declare Russian-born Beterbiev (11-0, 11 knockouts) the mandatory challenger.
“He’s ready to face any light heavyweight in the world,” he said.
On Feb. 2, Michel won a purse bid to stage the match with an offer of US$201,000.
He said Barrera, promoted by Main Events, is the latest of a handful of contenders to turn down bouts with heavy-hitting Beterbiev.
The Canadian Press