Mahmoud Charr and Lucas Browne are awaiting further clarification as their planned heavyweight clash is on hold.
A show previously featuring Charr-Browne on the bill was canceled by The Middle East Professional Boxing (MEPB) board. All parties involved have been informed that the card – which was scheduled to take place this Saturday at the Motospace Dubai Investment Park in Dubai, United Arab Emirates – will not go ahead as listed event promoter Iconic Promotions Dubai does not meet basic standards.
“The MEPB has decided to withdraw the sanction for the December 17, 2022 event in Dubai, UAE,” the commission said in an official message to all participants of the show, a copy of which was obtained by BoxingScene.com. “The way the promoter manages the event has damaged the goodwill of the sport and several complaints have been received. No suitable location has been secured, nor has government permission been granted so far.”
As BoxingScene’s Per Ake Persson previously reported, elements of the undercard will be used again. One such fight involves Ukrainian heavyweight Viktor Vykhryst (aka Victor Faust), who faces Indianapolis’ Franklin Lawrence (21-3-2, 16KOs) in a showdown this Saturday in Goepping, Germany. .
Efforts are underway to reschedule Charr-Browne in hopes of getting the fight on the books before the end of the year.
Charr (33-4, 19KOs) was eager to headline in his native Dubai. The Syrian-born former WBA heavyweight champion has won five in a row, all in Germany, where he was first based before relocating to the Middle East, where the 38-year-old sees himself as the ‘Arab King’.
In his last fight, Char scored a third-round stoppage over Nikola Milacic on May 28 in Hamburg, Germany. The fight came just 54 minutes after his previous outing, when Char dropped the undefeated Christopher Lovejoy over two rounds in Cologne, Germany the previous May.
Australian Browne (31-3, 27KOs) has stopped his last two opponents, including a career-reviving first-round knockout of Junior Fa on June 5 in Melbourne, Australia. The ESPN-televised win gave the 43-year-old from Perth new hope after Dave Allen and Paul Gallen’s pandemic-respected early knockout defeat.
The pair of middle-aged boxers saw the other as a way to earn a significant win, at least on their way to one more shot against the heavyweights. Unfortunately, they put their trust in a newbie developer who couldn’t deliver on his bold promises.
Little is known about Iconic Promotions Dubai, their team has apparently gone to ground. Several attendees of the now-cancelled show have been unable to reach anyone from the company. Apparently, it was the MEBP’s case that faced the issue head-on in refusing to go ahead with the event. It was also made clear that the company is definitely banned from doing business in the region again.
“At this point, there is no promoter involved and it would be impossible to go ahead with the event and meet the safety and medical standards to make it a safe event,” said a committee representative. “We officially announce that MEPB will not sanction the show or work with the promoter from now on.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox