Alexander Povetkin will headline in Hamburg against Hasim Rahman on July 14, and no longer is scheduled for the Haye-Chisora undercard. (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images)
Sauerland Event has chosen to pull the WBA "regular" heavyweight title fight between Alexander Povetkin and Hasim Rahman from the BoxNation event in London on July 14, leaving the Haye vs Chisora bill at Upton Park without its main undercard bout.
Povetkin vs Rahman will now headline a card on the same date in Hamburg, Germany, at Sporthalle.
Sauerland CEO Chris Meyer cited organizational concerns and TV time as the reason the company pulled its fighters from the controversial event, with a main event licensed by the Luxembourg Boxing Federation against the wishes of the British Boxing Board of Control. Neither Haye nor Chisora has an active license with the BBBofC, and the fight has been harshly criticized by many, though it has also sold a lot of tickets and garnered a lot of interest from the boxing world, positive and negative.
Meyer said that if the Povetkin-Rahman fight were in London, he couldn't "guarantee" a live broadcast in Germany. Given everything that's gone on with this card, it sounds more to me like Sauerland has made the decision to not be associated with the Haye-Chisora drama, and it's hard to blame them. That's purely speculation on my part, but this whole thing is a mess.
The European Boxing Union (EBU) suspended the Luxembourg Boxing Federation earlier this month, but nothing has changed for a Haye-Chisora fight. There is still the lingering suspicion that I assume many have, that says this fight isn't going to happen on July 14.