Fighter out of UFC 249 after testing positive for COVID-19

Fighter out of UFC 249 after testing positive for COVID-19

UFC 249 will proceed as planned Saturday night despite one of the fighters being ruled out Friday following a positive test for the coronavirus.

Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, who was due to oppose Uriah Hall in a middleweight bout, was scratched from the card after his test result was received, ESPN reported.

UFC executive vice president and chief business officer Hunter Campbell told ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith that the remainder of the card will continue as scheduled at VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Fla.

According to ESPN, Souza, a 40-year-old Brazilian, arrived in Jacksonville on Wednesday and told UFC officials that a member of his family previously tested positive for COVID-19. Although Souza had no symptoms, he was given a COVID-19 test and sent into quarantine.

The positive test result came back Friday, but ESPN reported that Florida state athletic officials are comfortable with UFC 249 moving forward because proper quarantine protocols were followed.

Souza (26-8) has lost four of his past six fights, including his last two. He most recently was in action last November, when he dropped a split decision to Poland’s Jan Blachowicz in Sao Paulo.

Hall (15-9) is a 35-year-old Jamaica native who fights out of New York. He won his most recent fight, earning a split decision over Brazil’s Antonio Carlos Jr. last September in Vancouver, British Columbia.

In the UFC 249 main event, Tony Ferguson (26-3) and Justin Gaethje (21-2) will battle for the organization’s interim lightweight title.


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