Just hours after losing out to rival Kanye West on the U.K. albums chart, rapper 50 Cent has shelved a string of European appearances. In a brief statement, his record company Interscope says, "50 Cen

Just hours after losing out to rival Kanye West on the U.K. albums chart, rapper 50 Cent has shelved a string of European appearances.

In a brief statement, his record company Interscope says, "50 Cent is very sad to confirm that due to a last minute, unforeseen and unanticipated change in his schedule, he will have to postpone his European promotion trip from Sept. 18-25."

50 Cent's decision to steer clear of Europe will wipe out the artist's planned appearance tomorrow (Sept. 19) at both the Music of Black Origin Awards and the Vodafone Live Music Awards in London.

The competition between both rappers ratcheted up a gear when 50 Cent -- whose real name is Curtis Jackson -- claimed in the press that he would retire from making solo albums if West won the sales battle.

West's "Graduation" (Roc-A-Fella) bowed at No. 1 on the latest Official U.K. Albums Chart, published Monday, ahead of 50 Cent's No. 2 "Curtis."

The U.S. sales story will become clearer when The Billboard 200 is published tomorrow. Billboard's European Top 100 will be published the following day.