By: Hans Themistode
Promoter Bob Arum couldn’t hide his grin as he announced the entire boxing schedule for the month of June, early last week. It’s been nearly four months since live boxing has flashed across a television set. First up on boxing’s return is WBO Featherweight titlist Shakur Stevenson as he takes on the unheralded Felix Caraballo on June 9th.
Stevenson might be expected to breeze right by his opponent, but Mikaela Mayer on the other hand, was set to take on her toughest test yet in Helen Joseph. Co main eventing on the first card back from a COVID-19 induced hiatus meant that the spotlight would be shining brightly upon Mayer. Unfortunately for her however, she won’t receive the attention she was hoping for.
The undefeated Featherweight prospect has recently tested positive for COVID-19 and will now begin her recovery process. With this being her first contest of the year on quite possibly the biggest stage of her career, the word disappointed would be an understatement to describe her feelings.
“I am heartbroken to report that I will no longer be fighting on Tuesday’s Top Rank card due to a positive result in my COVID-19 test yesterday,” said Mayer on her social media account. “It came as a complete surprise. I am currently asymptomatic and am quarantining at an off-site location per recommended guidelines. The rest of my team tested negative and they are all in good health.”
The news could not come at a more inopportune time for Mayer. At the age of 29, she has been tabbed as one of the bright stars in women’s boxing. However, without a ring appearance since October of 2019, her star could be dimming. With that being said, Mayer would rather look on the bright side. She is currently in good health and simply wants to make a return to the ring as soon as possible.
“I was really looking forward to bringing back boxing for all of you. I’m disappointed for myself, my team, my supporters and for my opponent. Helen Joseph worked just as hard to be here this week and put on a show for everyone. These protocols were put into place for a reason. It’s more important to care about the health and well-being of my team and the people at this event. I am complying with the rules set by the Nevada State Athletic Commission and Top Rank to keep everyone safe.”