David Nyika won't be able to defend his Commonwealth Games crown in a quest for a third gold medal in Birmingham with the Kiwi boxer forced to withdraw due to injury.
Nyika confirmed on Thursday he had been ruled out of this year's Games after sustaining bruising of bone marrow in his left hand from his recent bouts in Australia.
The injury will sideline Nyika for six weeks, meaning his Birmingham campaign is over.
“I’m absolutely gutted to be missing out on the Games,” said Nyika.
“I still haven’t fully got my head around it. It is always an honour competing for New Zealand and I was really looking forward to trying to clinch a third gold in Birmingham.”
The 26-year-old previously won gold at the Glasgow Games in the light heavyweight section before returning four years later on the Gold Coast with a gold as a heavyweight. He also claimed a bronze medal at last year's Tokyo Olympics in the heavyweight division.
Birmingham looked to be Nyika's final chance to represent New Zealand on such a stage with the boxer now turning pro and sitting on a 4-0 record to date.
Nyika's withdrawal was slightly offset by the New Zealand Olympic Committee on Thursday with news that national middleweight champion Emile Richardson had been added to the team to contest the men's under-75kg category.
“There’s only one goal and that’s to win the gold medal,” said Richardson.
“I’m really looking forward to being at such a pinnacle event and competing against some of the best athletes in the world.”