The heavyweight title picture took an unexpected turn on Saturday with Dillian Whyte’s highlight reel KO at the fists of Russian dangerman Alexander Povetkin.
Contender Hughie Fury (24-3, 14 KOs) was an interested observer, having lost a narrow decision to Povetkin in August 2019. Still only 25, Fury has taken risks early in his career and acquitted himself well at world level.
The Mancunian seemed unfortunate not to win the WBO crown against Joseph Parker in September 2017 in a bout sometimes overshadowed by former promoter Mick Hennessy’s ‘Shades of Ali’ comparison.
Yet the skilful Fury, cousin of WBC champion Tyson, certainly has a further role to play at the top end of the heavyweight division. Looking back on Saturday’s bout, Fury believes Whyte can come again and would also love the opportunity to face WBC interim champion Povetkin a second time.
“When the fight started off, I thought Povetkin was getting comfortable in there,” Fury told Sky Sports. “He’s more of a shorter fighter, Dillian Whyte, so he was able to get his shots off. Povetkin was growing with confidence. Dillian Whyte was waiting for that one shot because he was wary of the power of Povetkin. Dillian Whyte kept putting his hands [out] and going downwards.
“[Povetkin] feinted with the shot and came up with the uppercut, because [Whyte] kept going down, so yeah I did see the uppercuts he was open for.
“Dillian Whyte done good, he knocked him down a few times, and Dillian Whyte will come again,” continued Fury. “I took all of [Povetkin’s] best shots last time, they didn’t bother me at all. That’s why now, I’m more stronger, more wiser and they are the fights that I want. Trust me, now Povetkin won’t last [in a rematch].
“Povetkin is a very dangerous puncher, if you let him have the range. He’s right up there with [the best of] them, but when you’re in there, you don’t really feel the shots. I’m probably a bit of a nutcase. I just carry on doing what I’m doing, but I don’t really feel the shots.
“You’ve got to have the smartness in there with the boxing at the same time. That’s why I’m dying for that rematch. I was only going in there with one hand, I couldn’t throw my right hand last time. I kick myself when I watch it and I watch it over and over again.”
Main image: Mark Robinson/Matchroom.