A blockbuster weekend for European MMA has taken a significant knock as KSW 53 has been cancelled due to the global pandemic coronavirus.
The promotion announced the cancellation of the event Wednesday via social media.
The post reads:
“The safety of all participants of the galas organized by us has always been our priority. That is why we are very sad to inform you that we are forced to cancel KSW 53 planned for March 21, 2020. Despite our best efforts to organize the event, we had to make this difficult decision. Due to restrictions introduced throughout the country, aimed at minimizing the extent of the coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic, KSW 53 will not take place either in the previously indicated location or in the television studio.
“Our decision is motivated by care for ensuring safety and preventing health-threatening situations for both fighters who reach events from all around the world, as well as employees and associates organizing the event.
“We will keep you updated on the next activities of the KSW Federation.Thank you for your understanding.”
KSW 53 was set to take place in Lodz, Poland, on March 21 and was set to be headlined by European uber prospect and promotional welterweight champion, Roberto Soldic, defending his title against European legend, Marius Zaromskis. Several Polish fan favorites were also set to compete on the night with Mateusz Gamrot set to return and Michal Materla competing for the first time since his loss to Scott Askham in their title clash rematch.
On Tuesday, sources close to the promotion detailed that there was discussion about holding the event behind closed doors as to not facilitate the spread of coronavirus, but it was later determined that the event would not go ahead.
On the same day, KSW announced that the event would not take place “in the previously planned form:”
“The highest security standards are always the highest priority for the KSW Federation,” the press release read.
“Given a thoughtful consideration to the authorities’ recommendations, we have decided that KSW 53: Fight Code will not take place in the previously planned form. The KSW Federation will issue an official statement regarding the future of the KSW 53 on the 11th of March at 3:00pm CET.”
A number of significant European MMA events have been cancelled since the coronavirus became a global crisis. Last week, it was announced that heavily-backed fledgling organization ARES was forced to cancel it’s sophomore event that was due to take place in Brussels, Belgium in early April. Yesterday, it was revealed that Spanish promotion AFL had cancelled their Valkyries event which was set to take place on March 14.