Brixton heavyweight Dillian Whyte (27-2-0 18KO’s) is hoping history won’t repeat itself when he faces Alexander Povetkin over 12 rounds this Saturday.
First time around saw world-title hopeful Whyte dominate the first four rounds before being caught with a textbook uppercut from the Russian. Having been on the cusp of a world-title challenge, this defeat threw Whyte’s title aspirations up in the air.
Eager to make amends, Whyte immediately demanded the rematch which had been written into the contract, but this was delayed a number of times due to Povetkin testing positive for Covid in November and their second clash suspended in January amid the growing number of UK cases.
Now taking place in Gibraltar, Whyte has remained in camp in Portugal ever since and is no doubt itching to undo this blot on his record.
Although, he was completely dominating the first fight before he was caught, Povetkin (36-2-1 25KO’s) is a very dangerous opponent. As an amateur, Povetkin won gold medals in the super-heavyweight division at the 2002 and 2004 European Championships, 2003 World Championships, and 2004 Olympics, so is extremely well schooled and was Whyte’s undoing last time.
But Whyte has a good team around him and will have learned a few lessons from last time and won’t want to make the same mistakes again. One punch can change anything, in particular with the heavyweights, which makes this a fascinating encounter for the fight fans.
The warm-up should also be entertaining – with Whyte usually outspoken, he has refused to do pre-fight interviews if he is in the same room as Povetkin.
It looks like he has some renewed vigour this time around after some had said he didn’t appear to have the same hunger last time out. Having made some really good money on Sky Sports’ pay-per-views, maybe the words of the legend Marvin Hagler, who recently passed away, ring true: “It’s tough to get out of bed to do roadwork at 5am when you’ve been sleeping in silk pyjamas”.
Whatever the outcome, expect fireworks – I can’t see this going to the scorecards.