Alexander Volkanovski tests positive for COVID-19, Brian Ortega UFC 260 title fight scrapped

The UFC 260 featherweight title fight between champion Alexander Volkanovski and challenger Brian Ortega has been sidelined because of COVID-19 protocols.

The announcement came during the UFC Vegas 22 broadcast on Saturday, noting that the COVID-19 protocol issue stemmed from Volkanovski’s side. Specific details were not divulged on the broadcast.

Volkanovski later revealed that he had tested positive for COVID-19.

“So devastated to share that I’ve tested positive for COVID-19 and my fight is off and will be rescheduled. I tested negative leaving Australia, negative before entering the UFC bubble, but my latest test was positive,” Volkanovski wrote on Twitter.

“We have worked so hard getting ready for this fight and I’m absolutely gutted this has happened. We followed every policy and process to remain covid free, but it wasn’t meant to be this time. Thanks to everyone here in the States for your support since arriving and to everyone back home and around the world for your positive messages. To my fans, I’m certain I’ll be bouncing back stronger than ever before.”

The bout is being scrapped from the UFC 260 fight card, but officials intend to reschedule the bout at a later date. The date targeted for the rescheduled bout was not announced.

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UFC Vegas 22 co-main event also scrapped

Volkanovski vs. Ortega being delayed came just hours after the UFC Vegas 22 co-main event was scrapped, also because of COVID-19 protocols. Volkanovski’s teammate, Brad Riddell, was supposed to face Gregor Gillespie in the bout.

There was no official confirmation that it was Volkanovski’s positive COVID-19 test that scratched Riddell’s bout, but that would be a logical conclusion.