WWE pulled Finn Balor from his scheduled match against Intercontinental Champion Shinsuke Nakamura on Saturday at SMACKVILLE.
Less than an hour before going live on the WWE Network with a one-hour broadcast from a SmackDown live event at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee, WWE announced that Balor got pulled from his match against Nakamura since he was not cleared to compete after suffering an undisclosed injury earlier this week.
During the week, @FinnBalor suffered an undisclosed injury. @WWE Medical has unfortunately not cleared him for competition tonight at #SMACKVILLE. It is unknown who or if @ShinsukeN defends his title tonight. Stay tuned as we learn more.— WWE (@WWE) July 28, 2019
Nakamura appeared at the start of SMACKVILLE and wanted to be declared the winner by forfeit. As the referee was about to count Balor out, Ali appeared and cut a promo setting up an immediate match against Nakamura for the Intercontinental Championship.
.@FinnBalor is unable to compete tonight, but @AliWWE is and he’s ready to take FULL ADVANTAGE of this opportunity!@AliWWE vs. @ShinsukeN for the #ICTitle RIGHT NOW on @WWENetwork! #SMACKVILLE pic.twitter.com/gp41m5AN6I— WWE Network (@WWENetwork) July 28, 2019
In the closing moments of the match, Ali struck Nakamura with a satellite DDT for a near fall and went to the top rope. Nakamura, however, avoided the 054, sending Ali face first into the middle turnbuckle and scored the victory with the Kinshasa.
Balor, who turned 38 years old on Thursday, actually isn’t injured. He is, however, sick.
According to John Pollock of POST Wrestling, Balor is dealing with a “24-hour bug type situation” and WWE is hopeful that Balor will be ready for SmackDown LIVE on Tuesday.
Finn Balor has not been cleared for tonight’s match with Shinsuke Nakamura on the Smackville special in Nashville.— John Pollock (@iamjohnpollock) July 28, 2019
Was told that it is a “24-hour bug type situation” and they are hopeful that Balor will be available for SmackDown on Tuesday night.
Balor is scheduled to wrestle Dolph Ziggler on SmackDown LIVE. WWE announced the match a few hours before SMACKVILLE.
Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful also noted on Twitter that Balor got hospitalized with the stomach flu.
I dunno, but he had been hospitalized with a stomach flu. https://t.co/GIZyS1tkwg— Sean Ross Sapp Of Fightful.com, Who Is Very Humble (@SeanRossSapp) July 28, 2019
Balor remains hospitalized. The SmackDown LIVE Superstar went on social media this afternoon to post a photo of himself lying on a hospital bed. He also wrote “SummerSlam,” indicating that he’ll be ready to face “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt at the pay-per-view event.
Summerslam pic.twitter.com/kSwg9zpfOM— Finn Bálor forEVERYone (@FinnBalor) July 28, 2019