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Boxing: Injured Haye pulls out of comeback fight


David Haye's hopes of re-establishing himself as a heavyweight title contender suffered a setback on Tuesday after the former WBA champion withdrew Tuesday from a bout next month with Manuel Charr because of a hand injury.

British boxer Haye was set to fight for the first time in nearly a year at the Manchester Arena in northern England on June 29 against an opponent whose only professional loss came when he was controversially stopped because of a cut to his right eye in the fourth round by WBC champion Vitali Klitschko last year.

But after injuring his left hand on Sunday, the 32-year-old announced Tuesday that the contest had been postponed.

This setback damaged Haye's hopes facing either one of brothers Vitali or Wladimir Klitschko, who hold all of the recognised world titles in the heavyweight division.

"I'm absolutely gutted to have to pull out of this fight on June 29," the former unified cruiserweight champion said in a statement.

"I pick up injuries now and again in training and sometimes carry them into fights, but this was one I simply couldn't recover from in time. I need to rest it up for at least four weeks.

"I apologise to Manuel Charr and to everybody involved with the promotion. But most of all I want to say sorry to the thousands of fans who bought tickets to the fight. I felt it was important to let them know about the cancellation as soon as possible, so they can now make other plans.

"As soon as I am told I can resume full training, my loyal fans will be the first to know."

Haye pulled out of a planned bout with Wladimir Klitschko with a back complaint in 2009 and when they did meet two years Haye infamously cited a toe injury as the reason why the Ukrainian cruised to a unanimous decision win in Hamburg.