Opinion

The BN Verdict – Sense prevails and Dillian Whyte will wait for Alexander Povetkin

dillian whyte
Dillian Whyte rejects Dereck Chisora and Michael Hunter, Tyson Fury rejects him, and Alexander Povetkin awaits in January

THANKFULLY sense prevailed and Dillian Whyte will not fight on November 21 after summer conqueror Alexander Povetkin tested positive for coronavirus to postpone their pay-per-view rematch. That sequel is now pencilled in for January 30 after Whyte ruled himself out of fighting anyone else in the interim.

Whyte, via promoter Eddie Hearn, indicated he would be willing to step in and challenge WBC champion Tyson Fury on December 5 but Dereck Chisora and Michael Hunter – who both threw their name in the hat after hearing of Povetkin’s withdrawal – were not deemed appropriate by Whyte.

No surprise either given that 36-year-old Chisora only fought last weekend, losing over 12 rounds to Oleksandr Usyk. Just as pertinent is the fact that Chisora is 0-2 in fights with Dillian Whyte and nobody, bar Chisora and his manager David Haye, was clamouring for a third helping. Chisora’s never say die spirit is to be admired, so too Haye’s skill as a marketeer, but the fighter’s long-term wellbeing has to be paramount.

This time last week Haye was telling everyone that Chisora would beat Usyk. Now he’s telling everyone that Whyte-Chisora is a much anticipated trilogy. It’s hoped that Chisora, who has a long and punishing career behind him, is given the time to recover from his 10th professional defeat.   

Hunter, who drew with Povetkin last December, would have been a more interesting option and declared he would fight Whyte for nothing. However, the risk v reward factor would not have been remotely enticing for Dillian after his WBC mandatory status was ripped away by one booming Povetkin left hand in August.

The offer to Fury was unlikely to ever be more than noise. Fury has already agreed to fight Agit Kabayel on December 5 and Whyte was ruled out by both Tyson and his UK promoter, Frank Warren. Given the timeframe and the plans already in place, that idea being rejected was unsurprising.

It leaves Whyte looking ahead to Povetkin and a postponement that might turn out to be a blessing in disguise. A bout with coronavirus won’t help the ageing Russian’s preparation in any way. More importantly, it gives Whyte extra time to recover from the KO he suffered a little over two months ago.

LISTEN TO THE LATEST PODCAST – Whyte, Fury, Joshua, Wilder and Usyk all under the microscope.

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