The Heavyweight division finally provides a fight of note on Saturday evening, when unified champion Oleksandr Usyk puts his belts on the line against Britain’s Daniel Dubois. We’ve previewed the fight and given you our predictions of how we think it will go down.
Oleksandr Usyk (20-0-0(12ko)) has taken no time at all to establish himself as one of the world’s best pound for pound fighters and also best heavyweights.
When he first came into the weight division, many questioned whether he had the height, weight and power to step up from cruiserweight but what we see now is a fully fleshed out heavy and he looks in tremendous physical shape.
Regulation back-to-back wins over Anthony Joshua have secured his legacy in this weight division and now he fights close to home, in Poland but with a rumoured 40,000 Ukrainians in attendance. He will be desperate to put on a show for the watching world.
In his way is a man that has been predicted to be the next big thing for some time now. Daniel Dubois (19-0-0 (18ko)) exploded onto the scene and won 14 of his first 15 fights via knock out, before running into a literal juggernaut in Joe Joyce.
The loss to Joyce for the European title was a huge setback but the Londoner has steadily built himself back into a world title contender.
‘DDD’ has perhaps been a fortunate opportunist, as a result of the current mess in the heavyweight division, with the best unwilling or unable to agree to fight the best.
The 25-year-old has stepped in and has been handed the biggest of opportunities against the unified champion. But is it one he can take?
Where and when is the fight taking place?
The fight is happening at the Tarczynski Arena in Wroclaw, Poland, on Saturday, 26th August and will be broadcast live and exclusively on TNT Sports Box Office in the UK at a cost of £19.95. The event is an Alex Krassyuk promotion for K2 Promotions. The show will start at around 6PM, with the main ring walk taking place at around 11PM, UK time.
What does the full fight card look like?
MAIN EVENT: Oleksandr Usyk vs Daniel Dubois – WBO, WBA and IBF heavyweight titles
Denys Berinchyk vs Anthony Yigit
Dmytro Mytrofanov vs Hamzah Sheeraz
Daniel Lapin vs Aro Schwartz
Fiodor Czerkaszyn vs Anauel Ngamissengue
Rafal Wolczecki vs Roberto Arriaza
Vasile Cebotari vs Joel Julio
Nursultan Amanzholov vs Lazizbek Mullojonov
Oleksandr Solomennikov vs Piotr Gudel
Ziyad Almaayouf vs Janos Penzes
Bryce Mills vs Damian Tymosz
Yaroslav Khartsyz vs Konrad Czajkowski
(subject to change)
Who’s the favourite?
The champ, Usyk is as short as you would expect, as the 1/10 favourite, with Dubois a 6/1 outsider. The bookies have the draw all the way out at 25/1.
What’s been said?
The Betfred Lightweight Show host Anthony Crolla has done his usual break down of the fight, with his brother William.
Crolla has also given us a prediction of Usyk to win in rounds 7-9, which has been boosted out to 9/2 from 18/5. You can back Anthony’s selection below.
“I treat him (Dubois) with respect, I don’t underestimate anyone.
I’ve trained as hard as I do for any fighter.
The guys who are fighting on the frontline (of the Ukraine war) tell me that I inspire them.
Dubois is a nice guy but it’s time to stop talking, let’s see each other on August 26th.”
“I’m excited, it’s my dream. It’s every heavyweight’s dream to be fighting for the titles, three of the belts.
It means so much to me right now, I’m ready to go, so let’s get it on.
I’ve had a lot of Cruiser weight sparring, southpaw sparring, but I’m ready.
It’s good to be the underdog in a fight.”
Oleksandr Usyk to win on points – 11/4
Usyk has always been more of a boxer than a puncher and that’s doubly the case at heavyweight.
His last stoppage was against last minute replacement Chazz Witherspoon, who retired on his stool at the end of the 7th round.
Before that, he knocked out Tony Bellew, although that was back down at cruiser.
I think Usyk will win almost every round here but he mentioned in his pre-fight chats that he doesn’t actively look for the knockout and is happy to box.
Dubois is pretty durable and a big man and I think he has enough minerals to make it to the end of the 12th.
*All prices correct at the time of writing.