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Alistair Overeem withdraws from GLORY title fight against Rico Verhoeven

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The former K-1 champion was supposed to make his promotional debut in October against Verhoeven. 

Alistair Overeem and Rico Verhoeven during their press conference for GLORY: Collision 3.
Alistair Overeem and Rico Verhoeven during their press conference for GLORY: Collision 3.
Photo by MARCO DE SWART/ANP/AFP via Getty Images

The promotional debut of Alistair Overeem in GLORY Kickboxing has been postponed until next year.

Promotion officials announced on Wednesday morning that Overeem suffered an injury and was forced to withdraw from his heavyweight title fight against Rico Verhoeven at GLORY: Collision 3 in October. ‘The Demolition Man’ then confirmed his withdrawal in a lengthy Instagram post and explained the circumstances that led to him and his team making the decision.

“I’ve never pulled out a fight before and trust me, this decision was hard to make,” wrote Overeem. “I’ve been dealing with the injury for over a month. Two days before the press conference, a couple of weeks ago, I wasn’t even able to walk straight. After some treatment I felt much better. And since I’ve never been a quitter, I wasn’t going to quit now. I went back in camp. But…the injury got worse again and I could not even fulfill a complete training session.

“Yesterday my coaches, my medical team and myself had to make the decision to pull out,” continued Overeem.

You can read his full statement below:

GLORY has yet to reveal whether Verhoeven will receive a short-notice replacement opponent and remain on the upcoming card, which takes place at the GelreDome in Arnhem, Netherlands.

Overeem announced his return to kickboxing this past June following his departure from the UFC in March. The former UFC heavyweight title challenger saw a recent two-fight win streak snapped when he was knocked out by Alexander Volkov at UFC Vegas 18 and subsequently released from his contract. He earned wins over notable names in the division such as Brock Lesnar, Frank Mir, Mark Hunt and Fabricio Werdum throughout his tenure with the promotion.

Overeem has not competed in kickboxing in nearly a decade, with his last win coming against Peter Aerts in the K-1 World Grand Prix Final in 2010.