Rafael dos Anjos OUT of UFC 254 fight against Islam Makhachev on Fight Island after testing positive for coronavirus

RAFAEL DOS ANJOS it OUT of UFC 254 on Fight Island after testing positive for coronavirus.

The Brazilian was due to fight Islam Makhachev in Abu Dhabi on his return to lightweight.

But the 35-year-old former champion revealed online that he has tested positive for Covid-19 and as a result cannot fight.

Dos Anjos wrote: “I came to rescue my dream of becoming a champion again, and that goal was achieved.

"Sharing my experiences with the Nova Uniao Team and learning many details to improve my game and close the gaps in the future, none of this was in vain.

“Unfortunately, I will not be able to compete on the 24th. Covid19 caught me big time and the doctors cut me out.

"But soon I will be back victorious inside the octagon!”

Dos Anjos has won just once in his last five fights, all up at welterweight.

But he was set to drop back down the 155lb, where he lost the belt in 2016, for the first time in four years.

The pay-per-view is headlined by Khabib Nurmagomedov, 32, and Justin Gaethje, 31, who fight in a lightweight unification.

Michael Chandler, 34, who signed for the UFC after leaving Bellator, will provide back up for the title bout.

But Makhachev, 29, has called on Chandler to step in and replace Dos Anjos.

The Russian's manager Ali Abdelaziz has also offered Tony Ferguson, 36, the chance to step in on late notice.

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