The highly anticipated rematch between Ilja Dragunov and WWE NXT UK Champion WALTER has been delayed.

WWE just announced that WALTER is suffering from a severe injury to his left hand, and has been deemed unfit to compete.

There is no word yet on if this is a legitimate injury.

Today’s NXT UK episode opened with Triple H announcing Dragunov vs. WALTER II for next week’s show. They then went into an in-ring press conference with the champion and challenger. The presser ended with no physical altercation.

The broadcast was interrupted later on with an announcement that Dragunov and WALTER ended up fighting backstage, where WALTER suffered the left hand injury. It was then announced that the match has been delayed. WWE made the same announcements on social media.

Dragunov vs. WALTER II was to be the rematch from the October 29, 2020 NXT UK main event, which saw WALTER retain in a bout that was praised by fans and wrestlers.

WWE recently began a storyline where Dragunov has dealt with anger issues due to the previous loss to WALTER. He recently picked up singles wins over Dave Mastiff and Noam Dar, and then defeated Joe Coffey and Rampage Brown in a Triple Threat on June 24 to move to the top of the list of potential contenders. WALTER attacked Dragunov in a post-match angle that night, and choked him until he passed out.

The leader of Imperium passed 800 days as champion back in mid-June. He has held the NXT UK Title since defeating Pete Dunne at “Takeover: New York” on April 5, 2019. WALTER’s last title defense came over Brown at the NXT UK Prelude event during WrestleMania 37 Weekend. He also retained over Tommaso Ciampa that weekend at the “Takeover: Stand and Deliver” Night 1 event. The NXT UK brand took some time off in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but WALTER has a January 2021 successful title defense over A-Kid, an October 2020 defense over Ilja Dragunov, January 2020 wins over Dave Mastiff and Joe Coffey, an August 2019 defense over Bate, June 2019 wins over Trent Seven and Travis Banks, and a win over Dunne in his rematch, which took place in April 2019. That’s it for his reign so far.

There is no word yet on when Dragunov vs. WALTER II will take place, or what the story is with WALTER’s reported injury.

Stay tuned for more on WALTER and Dragunov. You can see related posts from today’s show below, along with WWE’s injury announcement.

Also below is a video of NXT UK highlights from today’s show, which also featured NXT UK Women’s Champion Meiko Satomura retaining over Amale, NXT UK Heritage Cup Champion Tyler Bate retaining over Mark Coffey, Oliver Carter and Ashton Smith vs. Teoman and Rohan Raja, and more.