Boxing: Calzaghe shapes up for Sheika

JOE CALZAGHE has received the all-clear on an elbow injury and can now make the fifth defence of his World Boxing Organisation super-middle-weight title against Omar Sheika at the Kingsway Leisure Centre in Widnes on 30 October.

The problem prevented Calzaghe making his American debut in Las Vegas last weekend, on the Oscar De La Hoya-Felix Trinidad world welterweight unification promotion.

Calzaghe, from Newbridge, sustained the injury in his last defence, against Australia's Rick Thornberry in Cardiff in June, and specialists told him to rest. He did not spar before the Thornberry bout which, as a result, proved far tougher than expected, and the promoter, Frank Warren, insisted that no further risks would be taken with his fight to regain fitness. And with the object of his mission being to make an impression in America, Calzaghe could hardly step into a ring unless he was completely ready.

Sheika is based in New Jersey and has been featured on US television. Last month he stopped Kevin Pompey on the Shannon Briggs-Frans Botha promotion in Atlantic City and is handled by Mike Tyson's former co-manager and trainer, Bill Cayton and Kevin Rooney.