File Photo: Jeff Sherwood/Sherdog.com
An undisclosed injury has forced UFC and Strikeforce veteran Falaniko Vitale to withdraw from his bout with Murilo Rua at Shine Fights 3, confirmed a press release sent by the promotion on Monday afternoon.
Vitale will be replaced by Travis Galbraith (17-7), a seasoned veteran with Pride and EliteXC experience.
“I was looking forward to fighting Niko Vitale, and have been training since New Year’s Eve to fight him. It was sad that he got injured, but that's how life goes,” stated Rua in the press release. “As a fighter you have to be prepared to overcome those things and step up to the challenges.”
Galbraith, of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, last saw action in a first-round knockout loss against Tom Watson at MFC 24 on Feb. 26, when a head kick connected flush.
“I'm very happy to be fighting Travis. I think he is an experienced, well-rounded fighter who will look at this fight as a great opportunity, and will do his best to turn this fight into a war. I'm excited about this fight, and I have been training hard since early January, doing a lot of jiu-jitsu, Muay Thai, and wrestling, so I think our fight can turn into Fight of the Night this coming May 15,” declared Rua.
The 29-year-old Rua has won two straight contests by knockout following his disappointing decision loss to Riki Fukuda at Dream 8 in April 2009. The Brazilian sports an MMA record of 18-10-1.
Shine Fights 3 will be headlined by the MMA debut of Ricardo Mayorga, a 36-year-old professional boxer and former welterweight and junior-middleweight champion. The Nicaraguan has faced some of the biggest names in boxing, including Oscar de la Hoya, Felix Trinidad, Vernon Forrest and Cory Spinks.
Mayorga will confront seasoned veteran Din Thomas (25-8) of American Top Team. “Dinyero,” 33, of Orlando, Fla., is 3-0 following his release from the UFC in April of 2008.
Shine Fights 3 “Worlds Collide: Mayorga vs. Thomas” will air live on pay-per-view.