Gennadiy Golovkin Vs. Ryota Murata Moved To March Or April Due To Covid-19 Restrictions

Gennadiy Golovkin’s return to the ring will take a little while longer.

Golovkin was scheduled to meet Ryota Murata in a middleweight unification fight on December 29 in Saitama, Japan, but it will now take place in March or April instead. It was postponed due to Japan’s new Covid restrictions, prohibiting foreigners from visiting the country.

Golovkin has been holding onto his IBF and IBO middleweight belts since his December 2020 win over Kamil Szeremeta.

Japan mandated the restriction earlier this month in an effort to halt the spread of the omicron variant. Officials hoped to obtain an exception for Golovkin from the Japanese government, but were denied, ESPN reported.

“I am deeply disappointed that fight in Japan has been postponed but the health and safety of the public must always be the priority,” Golovkin previously wrote on Twitter.

“I look forward to returning to the ring against Ryota as soon as possible.”

After losing to Saul “Canelo” Alvarez in 2018, the Kazakhstan boxer regained the title over Sergiy Derevyanchenko in October 2019.

Murata is coming off two TKO victories against Steven Butler and Rob Brant. He became a star in Japan after capturing a gold medal at the 2012 Olympics.

“I feel that my entire amateur and professional boxing career has been a preparation for this fight against Gennadiy Golovkin,” Murata said in November.

“This fight will determine my place in the middleweight division and boxing history.

“Gennadiy Golovkin has long been the standard-bearer of the middleweight division. To me, he is still undefeated. I have the highest respect for him.”

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