The mystery surrounding heavyweight enigma Christopher Lovejoy is likely to be solved this weekend.
The Las Vegas-based heavy has reeled off 19 straight KOs in his 19 fights (17 in the opening round) yet almost no footage of the 37-year-old exists with all of his previous bouts taking place in the boxing backwater of Tijuana, Mexico. But can Lovejoy compete at a much higher level?
On Saturday, Lovejoy will emerge from the shadows to face the WBA’s ‘Champion In Recess’ Manuel Charr at the Box Gym in Cologne. To add to the confusion, Charr was the WBA’s ‘Regular’ champion at heavyweight before being moved to ‘Champion in Recess’ due to inactivity. Another fringe contender Trevor Bryan is now the WBA Regular title holder. What the WBA would call Lovejoy in the event of a victory this Saturday is unclear.
But the plot thickens further. Ahead of his big test, Lovejoy hasn’t brought a trainer, cutman or any representative with him to add to an already, deeply weird scenario.
Lovejoy had been due to face Doncaster favourite Dave Allen in the UK last year before the fight fell through at the last hurdle following a dispute with former promoter Don King. Lovejoy subsequently filed for bankruptcy, but he is still dreaming big.
“I’m here to shock the world,” Lovejoy told Sky Sports. “This has never been done before. I’ve travelled into No Man’s Land, this guy’s back yard, by myself! [The lack of fight footage] is to my advantage. They can’t strategise to any weaknesses or flaws that I might have.
“I don’t know how two people can be the [WBA Regular] champion. It’s too complicated. But I’ll be back in the rankings. Once I beat him, that catapults me onto the next level with the top guys.
“The top two guys, [Anthony] Joshua and [Tyson ] Fury, won’t be available. After that there is Deontay Wilder, Dillian Whyte, Alexander Povetkin and Andy Ruiz Jr.
“Preferably the fights I want? Joe Joyce or Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller. I saw flaws in those guys a long time ago. Maybe Filip Hrgovic, he needs a fight, too. Immediately after this fight I will say: ‘who’s next?'”
A victory over the seasoned Charr this weekend may lend a little bit more credibility to these lofty goals.
Main image: Twitter @Lovejoyboxing