Ian Garry is OUT of UFC 296 due to pneumonia, with showdown against Vicente Luque scrapped following chaotic build-up including ‘How to be a WAG’ controversy involving his wife

  • Ian Garry did not attend media day on in Las Vegas, sparking concern
  • It has now been confirmed by Garry that a doctor has said he cannot fight
  • Paddy ‘The Baddy’ Pimblett MUST seize his moment in the UFC 296 limelight after seeing his career stutter – The Hook 

Ian Garry has been forced to pull out of his UFC 296 showdown with Vicente Luque due to pneumonia. 

Garry, who did not show up to media day obligations on Wednesday in Las Vegas, confirmed the fight is off as he continues to battle illness. 

‘I have pneumonia. They tried everything to help me. In the end, UFC doctor said there’s no chance I can fight,’ he told Ariel Helwani. 

‘The UFC doctor made the call. This annoys me more than anyone. I want to fight. It’s my favorite thing to do,’ he added. 

The Irish rising star has been dealing with the spotlight shining brighter than ever in the build-up to UFC 296 for a number of reasons. His wife Layla Machado Garry’s short 2010 book ‘How to be a WAG’ resurfaced and led to fans and fellow fighters such as Sean Strickland and Colby Covington posting a number of taunts. 

Ian Garry has had to pull out of UFC 296 after suffering with pneumonia
Garry (pictured with his wife Layla and son Leo), was one of the fighters of great interest on the UFC 296 card but the illness means he is unable to compete
Layla responded to criticism online of her 2010 short book ‘How to be a WAG’

Some of the mockery crossed the line into abuse and Garry later revealed he had been worrying about the safety of his family in travelling to the US. 

The supposedly satirical ‘How to be a WAG’ book was written by Gary’s wife, 40, as a tongue-in-cheek way to coach women into trapping rich athletes in a relationship. 

Layla hit back at the trolling she and her husband, 26, were being subjected to, saying: ‘I wrote a book called ‘How to be a WAG’. Now, that statement itself is a little bit of a stretch. I can hardly call myself an author of an 11-page audible-only satire story that was written in 2010.

‘That context is key because that was during the FIFA World Cup when I was working at OK and various different gossip mags. We were creating this hilarious satire and look at wives and girlfriends in football.

‘That satirical book, if you listen to it, is really silly and anybody who takes it as fact has completely missed the mark. At the time, it was a huge success. It went out, it was funny, and people got the joke.’ 

The book was not the only point of distraction for Garry. There was fascination in some quarters over reports that his wife’s ex-husband Richard Cullen works as Garry’s nutritionist. 

There was also a very public disagreement about him parting ways with Renegade Gym in Birmingham. 

Leon Edwards and his coach say Garry was kicked out due to not fitting in with the culture, while the Irishman insisted it is because Edwards’ coach felt insecure about having a top welterweight contender train so closely with his champion.  

Layla  took to Instagram to respond to backlash
The sports presenter posted the video on social media
Garry was looking to go 7-0 in the now-cancelled Vicente Luque bout in Las Vegas

Given the heightened interest around Garry and the fact that this was a brilliant match-up at UFC 296, it is a huge shame the contest will not take place. 

Saturday night’s opponent Vicente Luque responded magnanimously to news of the withdrawal, writing: ‘First of all, I wish the best recovery. Speedy recovery for him, and the best for his family – and it’s really unfortunate.

‘I was so ready for this fight. I’ve had a great training camp. Anybody that sees me on social media sees a little bit of what I’ve been doing. They know how ready I am for this fight. Weight cut has been going so, so good – the easiest weight cut I’ve ever had in my career. 

‘I have all my team here supporting me. A lot of guys came out in this fight. A lot of people supported me to come watch the fight, as well, and unfortunately it’s not going to happen.

‘It’s out of my control. Everything that I could do, everything that I have control of in my job and really put my heart into this, I did. I gave it my all. Unfortunately, we cannot really control everything. 

‘As I said, I wish the best. I wish recovery for Ian. Now it’s time for me to rest. I did have a hard training camp.’

It remains to be seen whether the UFC will attempt to find a late replacement to fight Luque.  


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