Rising Australian boxing star Justis Huni is set to miss the Tokyo Olympics after injuring his hand during his victory over Paul Gallen.
The 22-year-old was considered a gold medal contender but is expected to pull out because of a hand injury re-aggravated in his victory over Paul Gallen last week.
The Australian sensation got the devastating news at 10am on Wednesday morning.
His Olympic dream gone in the blink of an eye.
Huni, having injured his knuckles during sparring last month and carried it through his victory over Christian Tsoye, re-injured them during the first round of his stunning victory over Gallen.
Huni’s manager confirmed the injury blow to foxsports.com.au and said results of scans would determine his Olympic fate.
“Justis has had a couple of hand injuries for the past month,” Dean Lonergan told foxsports.com.au.
“He’s got an injury in his left thumb that we were going to get repaired after the Olympics.
“But he’s also got an injury to one of his knuckles, which is far more serious and at the moment, we’ve had X-rays, we‘ve had MRI scans done on it, at the moment it looks like he might be out of the Olympics.”
Huni could not be reached by foxsports.com.au, but his agent Lonergan said his camp was “devastated”.
Lonergan confirmed Huni first injured his knuckles during sparring New Zealander Semisi Kalu.
“He was sparring a bloke called Semisi Kalu,” Lonergan said.
“Now, Semisi was a great sparring partner and did everything we asked, but the first couple of sessions, Justis beat him so bad that he couldn’t take any more shots to the head. So what happened was Justis was sparring with Semisi, going to his body, so Semisi had his elbows down and Justis hit him low, trying to go to his body and instead hit his elbow and that’s where he did this bloody injury and he’s been carrying it through the last two fights.
“Like all fighters, you worry, they think they can do these things and come out the other end, but it’s only when the injuries are severe that they worry about it then.”
Huni is waiting on more opinions from doctors, but it is expected he will miss between 3-6 months.
Asked why Huni fought knowing he had an injury, Lonergan said decisions were often left to the boxer.
“At the end of the day, we rely on what the fighter and trainer is going to say,” he said.
“They made the decision that they wanted to have these fights.
“They thought Justis was in a position to compete and win these fights, and that’s exactly what happened, so they’re his decisions. I had no idea about the extent of the other injury until today.”