Gennady Golovkin's £100m world title defence under threat due to new Covid rules

Golovkin could lose out on his latest unification bid against Ryota Murata, after Japan announced the suspension of foreign visitors from the end of the month

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Cristiano Ronaldo has a catch-up with Gennady Golovkin

Gennady Golovkin may not be permitted to enter Japan for his world title unification against Ryota Murata due to the latest suspension of foreign visitors.

The fight, worth a reported £100million, is considered the biggest in Japanese history and was set to take place on December 28 on the border of Tokyo in Saitama.

Golovkin has been out of action since his routine victory over Kamil Szeremeta at the end of the last year.

He could now face missing out on a huge payday with his latest tilt thrown into doubt after Japan employed their latest coronavirus restrictions to limit inbound foreign travel.

Chairman of the Teiken Boxing Gym Akihiko Honda is planning to clarify the situation with the Japanese sports agency and is awaiting a decision on the status of the bout.

Gennady Golovkin edged out Sergiy Derevyanchenko



“I am prepared to change the situation in this way,” Honda said. “I think it will come out, so I will keep an eye on it.

“This match is the biggest match in the history of Japanese boxing with a total budget of over 15 billion yen. If Golovkin is positive in the test the day before the game, we can’t play the game.

“We are prepared for such a risk. However, it is a sudden matter for the Japan Sports Agency, and nothing has been decided yet.

“We are in close contact with the Japan Sports Agency, and have submitted all the plans and documents necessary for the match to be completed, such as the entry of the Golovkin camp and related parties, and the subsequent quarantine.

“”I hope that if you [Golovkin] complete the application before this talk, you will be able to enter the country.”

Golovkin is looking to reconquer the middleweight division after losing his belts to pound-for-pound king Canelo Alvarez back in 2018.

Their previous meeting in 2017 was deemed unfortunate for Golovkin, who was expected to be pronounced the winner before being held to a draw.

Several other options are available for Golovkin including a middleweight defence against British star Chris Eubank Jr who has been awaiting a title shot since his middleweight return.

Do you think Gennady Golovkin could pursue a trilogy with Canelo Alvarez next year? Let us know in the comments section below

But a showdown any time soon seems unlikely with the Briton set to face domestic rival Liam Williams in a rescheduled clash in January.

Golovkin is also being considered as an option for rival Alvarez’s return in a historic trilogy bout next year.

But the 39-year-old has admitted he will not make any weight switch to pursue the Mexican without a concrete offer on the table.

“This fight is possible,” Golovkin told Sky Sports. “Theoretically nothing has changed.

“There are certain questions which have been posed. They are still open, they remain unanswered.

“We have been discussing it but haven’t moved towards this fight for quite some time. We fought, I know who he is. I don’t think about him at all, It isn’t something I don’t give any thought to.

“I don’t want to entertain moving to a different division unless there is an offer on the table.”

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