UFC women’s flyweight contender Cynthia Calvillo released a statement announcing she is out of UFC 254 after testing positive for COVID-19.
Calvillo was set to take on Lauren Muphy in a potential No. 1 contender fight at 125lbs at next weekend’s UFC 254 pay-per-view card. However, she was forced to withdraw from the contest after testing positive for COVID-19. The former strawweight prospect made the announcement that she is out of the flyweight fight against Murphy on her Instagram.
Hey guys. Unfortunately I am no longer fighting next weekend. I took two covid test and they were both positive. I’m feeling fine at the moment but I am very bummed out about it. I was ready to put on a show for you guys but it is what is. It’s all in Gods hands now. Thank you all for the love and support. I’ll be back soon! #godsplans
Calvillo (9-1-1) currently the No. 3 ranked women’s flyweight in the UFC. After going 5-1-1 in her first seven fights at strawweight, Calvillo moved up in weight after several disastrous weight cuts. In her first fight in the flyweight division, Calvillo defeated former title challenger Jessica Eye to set up this important fight against Murphy, a long-time veteran of the women’s divisions who is looking to get a title shot at 125lbs herself.
Fortunately for Murphy, the No. 4 ranked women’s flyweight, the UFC was able to locate a replacement opponent on short notice. The Score’s Nick Baldwin reported that Murphy will take on UFC newcomer Liliya Shakirova at UFC 254 with Calvillo out. Shakirova is an 8-1 prospect out of Uzbekistan and rides a three-fight win streak into her UFC debut here.
Cynthia Calvillo was forced to withdraw from UFC 254 after testing positive for COVID-19 earlier today, per @bokamotoESPN. Lauren Murphy will now face newcomer Liliya Shakirova on Oct. 24 in Abu Dhabi.
— Nick Baldwin (@NickBaldwinMMA) October 16, 2020
Ideally, Cynthia Calvillo feels better from COVID-19 soon so she can get back into the Octagon and jump back into the title picture. But in her absence, both Murphy and Liliya Shakirova have a big opportunity to become a contender at 125lbs. Murphy has more to lose while Shakirova has everything to gain from this key flyweight battle.