Former world boxing champion Floyd Mayweather has delivered a knockout blow to those hoping to see him take on a kickboxer.
Mayweather, 41, says the fight against Tenshin Nasukawa on December 31 is off.
Mayweather claims he had never heard of Nasukawa prior to the rushed announcement and that he and his team were ‘blindsided’ into giving fans misleading information.
In an embarrassing statement on his Instagram page recanting the announcement, Mayweather said: “Nowthat I am back on US soil after a long and disappointing trip to Tokyo, I now have the time to address you, my fans and the media in regards to the upcoming event on December 31st that was recently announced.
“First and foremost, I want it to be clear that I, Floyd Mayweather, never agreed to an official bout with Tenshin Nasukawa. In fact (with all due respect) I have never heard of him until this recent trip to Japan.
“Ultimately, I was asked to participate in a 9 minute exhibition of 3 rounds with an opponent selected by the ‘Rizen Fighting Federation’. What I was originally informed of by Brent Johnson of ‘One Entertainment’ was that this was to be an exhibition put on for a small group of wealthy spectators for a very large fee.
“’This exhibition was previously arranged as a ‘Special Bout’ purely for entertainment purposes with no intentions of being represented as an official fight card nor televised worldwide.
“’Once I arrived to the press conference, my team and I were completely derailed by the new direction this event was going and we should have put a stop to it immediately.
Apology to fans
“I want to sincerely apologise to my fans for the very misleading information that was announced during this press conference and I can assure you that I too was completely blindsided by the arrangements that were being made without my consent nor approval.
“For the sake of the several fans and attendees that flew in from all parts of the world to attend this past press conference, I was hesitant to create a huge disturbance by combating what was being said and for that I am truly sorry.
“I am a retired boxer that earns an unprecedented amount of money, globally, for appearances, speaking engagements and occasional small exhibitions.”
Mayweather has not been in the ring since beating UFC star Conor McGregor in August 2016.