PETER Cope has been forced to pull out of Friday night’s big North-East boxing show.
The unbeaten Hartlepool fighter had been relishing his second appearance on television – Loaded TV were planning to screen his bout with Qasim Hussain live on Sky channel 200.
But a bout of flu has floored the popular 21-year-old for the Houghton-le-Spring bill.
“There was no way he could have boxed on Friday night, not without taking a massive risk,” said coach and dad, Peter Cope Snr.
“He got it quite bad a couple of weeks back when everyone in Hartlepool seemed to go down with flu.
“Peter had to have four days off but he got back in the gym and everything looked OK.
“But he took bad again a couple of days ago and there was no energy there.
“We got him in the ring to do some rounds but he blew up after just two.
“We’re disappointed, but the decision was really quite easy.
“We’ve come a long way in the last couple of years and he’s in a good position, unbeaten with seven wins.
“But what’s the point of taking risks?
“If we went ahead with the fight and it goes wrong, then you have messed up all that hard work.
“I honestly don’t think he could have got through it.
“Peter is a couple of wins away from possibly getting an eliminator or something like that.
“So it would be daft to take a chance on a four-rounder.”