Cruz and also Lineker were scheduled to compete Jan. 26 in UFC 233, however long after their matchup was reported, Cruz suffered a shoulder injury in practice and had been forced to withdraw from their bantamweight encounter (UFC 233 would later be canceled after other significant developments were made to the card). The bout was to be Cruz’s fight since Dec. 30, 2016.

On Friday, a message was written by former UFC champion about Instagram to Lineker:

“The deep esteem I have for you as a person being out of the Octagon is among the largest reasons I had been honored to have that fight along with you,” Cruz composed thanking Lineker for reaching out to him.

See Cruz’s full announcement below:

The deep esteem I have for you as a person being out of the octagon is one of the biggest reasons.

The opportunity would have been a terrific challenge for me up in my livelihood.

I repent I didn’t get the honour of competing against you on our set date.

I appreciate you reaching out authentically in your own kind, powerful words.

Thank you for teaching ME what it looks like to be a whole hearted inspirational person that looks eliminating the concern which includes just needs and interests.

This is really just a drawback opportunity.

With nothing but respect for you, I need one of the finest in your next matchup and anticipate watching you compete.

33, cruz, is no stranger to setbacks in his livelihood. Injuries have cost him years including stretching of inactivity from October 2011 and from September 2014 on January 2016.

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