Coronavirus: Shakur Stevenson, Michael Conlan fights to go ahead behind closed doors

Boxing cards on March 14 and 17 will go ahead as planned in New York, but Top Rank has announced fans will not be present during the bouts.

WBO featherweight champion Shakur Stevenson.   -  Al Bello/Getty Images

Promoter Top Rank has confirmed its upcoming boxing shows at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden will go ahead behind closed doors.

The coronavirus outbreak has seen a number of sporting events postponed around the world - the NBA, MLS and NHL seasons halted with immediate effect - but boxing will go ahead in New York, albeit without fans present.

Undefeated featherweight Shakur Stevenson will defend the WBO title for the first time when he faces Miguel Marriaga in the main event on Friday's show.

READ | Joshua to defend IBF title against Pulev in June

The second card takes place at the same venue next Tuesday, as Irishman Michael Conlan headlines in a 10-round bout against Belmar Preciado on St Patrick's Day.

"Due to the coronavirus pandemic, and to ensure the health and safety of boxing fans, Top Rank announced today the March 14 and March 17 events at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden will proceed without spectators," a statement from Top Rank read.

"The only individuals granted access to the events will be essential production and support staff, in addition to fighters and necessary team members. Both events will be shown live on their respective ESPN platforms.

"As for future events, Top Rank is consulting with its venue partners and will make a determination in due course."

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