At one point, he was the most exciting boxer in Great Britain, a man not afraid to court controversy, while also delivering in the ring. He’s the man who defeated the giant Nikolay Valuev, but he’s also the man defeated by Wladimir Klitschko. Now David Haye is to return to the ring, and his first bout will be against the 33-year-old Australian Mark de Mori, who will present a stern test.
It will be Haye’s first bout since comprehensively defeating Derek Chisora in 2012, which saw him confirm his status as Britain’s best heavyweight. With the emergence of Tyson Fury though, it now seems he wants to regain that crown. And if Fury manages to defeat Klitschko and win the belt, don’t rule out an all-British encounter sometime in the future.
Of course, Haye has to overcome Mark de Mori first though, and his first bout back will undoubtedly be a tough one. De Mori might be relatively unknown, however he has an impressive record, only losing once in 33 fights. What’s more, 26 of his victories have come via knockout, underlining his danger even more, and he last lost way back in 2004. Even David Haye – notorious for his damning statements about many opponents – admits that de Mori “is top 10.”
This is now Haye’s fourth attempt at making a return to the ring, after the previous three were all hampered by injury (two of these were scheduled to be against Tyson Fury). Should the same fate befall him this time, people will start to wonder whether he should finally call it a day. Preparation for the fight seems to be going well so far though, with Haye being trained by Shane McGuigan, the son of Barry McGuigan.
So, it remains to be seen whether Haye will return to his old form and provide another reason for British boxing fans to get excited. The fight will take place at the O2 Arena on 16th January, and it will undoubtedly be one of the biggest British boxing events of the year.
In other boxing news, the other fight everyone is waiting for – the battle between Tyson Fury and Klitschko – is getting ever closer. On Friday the two fighters will go head-to-head in Dusseldorf, but will the Brit be able to defeat the dominant Ukrainian? Klitschko has to lose at some point, so Fury will be hoping that the time for Klitschko’s demise is imminent…