UFC 293 has taken a major hit after Kai Kara-France revealed that he’s been forced to pull out of his upcoming fight against Manel Kape, which was scheduled to take place on the main card from Sydney, Australia on Sept. 9.
Kara-France made the announcement via Instagram where he explained that he suffered a concussion during training that ultimately led to the decision to drop off the card near his home in New Zealand.
“So unfortunately, I’ve had to withdraw from my next fight in Sydney, Australia, UFC 293,” Kara-France said. “I suffered a concussion over the weekend in training. I’ve been speaking to my coaches, my team and my family, and they all think it’s the right decision to put my health first.
“Just want to say sorry to all the friends and family that bought tickets, flights, accommodations, all the fans that were excited to see me fight live. I’m gutted that I won’t be a part of this card.”
Kara-France was looking to bounce back after suffering back-to-back losses in his two most recent appearances in the UFC. He fell short in his bid to become interim flyweight champion when he fell to Brandon Moreno by TKO and Kara-France followed that up with a controversial split decision loss to Amir Albazi back in June.
Now he’ll have to wait until a later date to make his return to the octagon following a concussion that will prevent him from competing in September.
This is also the latest setback for Kape, who has endured a slew of opponent changes over the past year as he seeks to continue his rise up the flyweight ranks.
Since defeating David Dvorak this past December, Kape has been scheduled to face ex-flyweight champion Deiveson Figueiredo, one-time title challenger Alex Perez and now Kara-France with all three opponents pulling out before the fight could take place.
There’s no word yet if Kape will remain on the card at UFC 293 against a new opponent or if he’ll be rescheduled for a later date.
UFC 293 will be headlined by reigning middleweight champion Israel Adesanya defending his title against Sean Strickland with heavyweights Tai Tuivasa and Alexander Volkov meeting in the co-main event.