Dillian Whyte Dillian Whyte in rematch Povetkin Whyte knocks out
Sat, 27 Mar 2021 03:00:00 +0000
The Briton, 32, showed smart timing from the off in Gibraltar before a decisive attack in the fourth round
A right hand sent Povetkin backwards, another
Last updated on .From the section Boxing
Dillian Whyte kept alive his hopes of a heavyweight world title shot by emphatically gaining revenge over Alexander Povetkin with an impressive knockout win in their rematch.
The Briton, 32, showed smart timing from the off in Gibraltar before a decisive attack in the fourth round.
A right hand sent Povetkin backwards, another sent him into the ropes and a left hook floored him heavily.
He found his feet but was rightly stopped to suffer his third loss.
Only Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko had previously beaten Povetkin in 39 fights.
Some questioned if Whyte was right to take an immediate rematch after a horrific knockout defeat by the Russian in August but after four well-crafted rounds, BBC Radio 5 Live commentator Mike Costello said his performance would "reverberate" around the heavyweight division.
"I am just sad I didn't get it finished in the first round," said Whyte.
"He is a tough guy but I felt I could have finished it early.
"I want the world title."
Whyte will likely need to wait some time for a world title shot if Joshua and Tyson Fury – who hold all four major belts between them – finalise the details for two successive bouts.
August's loss to the wily and experienced Povetkin ultimately cost Whyte his position in the queue for a title fight and a second defeat would have all but wiped out his status as an elite name in the division.
Such was the significance of the bout for his career, late moves were made to switch it to Gibraltar so that Whyte could avoid the disruption of a 10-day quarantine in a Covid-secure UK fight bubble.
Private planes were chartered for stakeholders and Povetkin.
Whyte stayed on a super yacht close to the fight venue.
Those attending from the UK signed up to a handful of Covid-19 tests to make hopes of using the obscure fight base become a reality.
Whyte agreed to a cut in his fight purse to deliver the venue switch and when the lights dimmed at the Europa Point Sports Complex he played his part perfectly in front of 500 fans.
In a robe sporting 'RIP Hagler' in tribute to the late middleweight 'Marvelous' Marvin Hagler, Whyte bounced on the spot as his ring walk music played, seemingly bristling with energy as the chance to right wrongs drew closer.
From the bell he kept Povetkin's fierce power at distance and his rival – who contracted Covid-19 late in 2020 – looked shaky on his legs early on, losing his balance even as punches flew past his head.
Whyte crisply landed a jab-right hand combination in the second, and he drove home a well-timed counter right in the third before the fourth saw him ruthlessly strike – the decisive left hook delivered with an arrogance befitting of a final blow.
Whyte has admirably taken risk after risk in choosing opponents.
It may still be true that his risk in facing Povetkin in August proves costly to his hopes of landing a title shot.
For 41-year-old Povetkin, retirement now surely looms while for Whyte there are at least exciting possibilities on the horizon again.
This manner of this win shows he is a worthy contender.
He has moved on from a brutal setback in the most emphatic way possible.
Promoter Eddie Hearn speaking to Sky Sports: "His world championship dreams were on the line tonight.
That was a lot of pressure tonight.
Tonight was about getting him back on track.
He wasn't going to be denied.
"He man-handled Povetkin, he battered him from pillar to post.
We are back where we wanted to be.
The aim remains the same, for Dillian to have a shot at the world championship."
BBC Sport boxing correspondent Mike Costello: "The key emotion for Whyte will be relief because of all those doors being closed if he didn't win this evening, in the way that they have now closed for Povetkin.
"This opens up a whole range of opportunities.
Yes, he might have to wait for that world title chance but he's used to that.
At least now he is back in a position where he can barter on the back of the performance that he's produced tonight.
"He is now once again a significant factor in the heavyweight division."
Natasha Jonas, first female British Olympic boxer, on BBC Radio 5 Live: "The pressure of needing to win and the expectation weighs differently on different fighters and Dillian proved tonight that he can do it."
British trainer Peter Fury on BBC Radio 5 Live: "It was a faultless performance.
Povetkin got beat – it wasn't because he was an old man – he got beat fair and square.
Whyte has a tremendous left hook, that would have put anyone over."
Dillian Whyte Dillian Whyte
Sat, 27 Mar 2021 03:00:00 +0000
Dillian Whyte kept his dream of a world heavyweight title alive by stopping Alexander Povetkin in the fourth round of their rematch in Gibraltar
Last modified on Sat 27 Mar 2021 20.20 EDT
Dillian Whyte’s tumultuous career is back on track after the heavyweight avenged the shocking knockout defeat he suffered against Alexander Povetkin last August by winning the rematch in conclusive fashion with a fourth round stoppage victory in Gibraltar on Saturday night.
Whyte dominated the fight and, more impressively, he overcame the psychological demons which could have unsettled him in the aftermath of his crushing defeat seven months ago.
The end was swift and decisive.A desperate Povetkin, whose face was bruised and swollen after all the punishment he had absorbed in the first 10 minutes of the fight, tried to launch an attack in round four.
Whyte caught him with a beautiful counter and then finished the contest with brutal efficiency.
A right hand wobbled Povetkin and sent him reeling towards the ropes.
Whyte then nailed him with a short right followed by a scything left hook which sent the Russian crashing to the canvas.
Povetkin hauled himself to his feet but he then fell towards the ropes again.
He managed to steady himself briefly but, as the count continued, he weaved drunkenly forwards.
The referee rightly ended the contest.
Whyte had been calm and confident throughout the fight, and only a little reckless, and he soon went to his own corner to find a stool so that his vanquished opponent could sit down.
It was a classy gesture which echoed his ring walk.
Whyte wore a black and red gown which paid tribute to Marvin Hagler, the great middleweight champion who died this month, and he then threw back his head and howled as he has always seen himself as a lone wolf in the murky terrain of heavyweight boxing.
Povetkin was much quieter and more circumspect as he approached the ring.
He looked as if he already knew the grim outcome.
Whyte came out with positive and aggressive intent in the opening round and Povetkin was soon caught off balance.
A short solid hook from Whyte wobbled Povetkin as the British fighter applied pressure in a way which suggested he carried few anxieties into the fight.
An ugly swelling began to form under Povetkin’s left eye in round two as Whyte dominated with his jab.
It was already clear that Whyte was on his way to victory.
His renewed confidence stemmed from the influence of Harold ‘The Shadow’ Knight who had been the assistant trainer when Lennox Lewis won rematches against Oliver McCall and Hasim Rahman.
Lewis lost only two contests in his long and successful career, when he was knocked out surprisingly by both McCall and Rahman, but Knight was part of the team which helped him win each rematch decisively.
In 2019, Knight also advised Anthony Joshua as the British world champion outpointed Andy Ruiz Jr after he had been knocked out, again in startling circumstances, in their first fight six months earlier.
The decision to bring Knight into Whyte’s camp clearly worked.
In the first fight last August Whyte had also dominated for four rounds, dropping Povetkin twice, but the uppercut which knocked him out so devastatingly could have eroded all his belief and confidence.
It was the kind of concussive loss which has ruined more fragile characters than Whyte.
But the 32-year-old claimed before the fight that “adversity is the story of my life” and he promised he would show the resilience which allowed him to survive an impoverished childhood in Jamaica as well as being stabbed and shot on the streets of London during his troubled past.
Povetkin is past his best, at the age of 41, and since their last encounter he had been hospitalised twice after being infected with Covid.
The debilitating impact of the virus on other fighters has been evident and, even before he stepped into the ring, Povetkin looked to have lost some of his muscled bulk.
Whyte can now, once more, lay legitimate claim to being the fourth-best heavyweight in the world behind Tyson Fury, Joshua and Deontay Wilder.
Fury and Joshua are expected to finally meet in a heavyweight unification title showdown in the summer – which opens up the possibility of a clash between Whyte and Wilder if the American can be enticed back into the ring after his shattering loss to Fury in February 2020.
Whyte spent more than a thousand days as the WBC’s No1 contender, without getting a crack at the title, but his redemption in Gibraltar has undoubtedly moved him back into contention.
He held his nerve in a fight called the Rumble on the Rock and delivered the victory he needed so badly.
Whyte can now look forward to much bigger and more dangerous heavyweight nights in the ring.
– March 27, 2021
Dillian Whyte 2021 Whyte knocks out Povetkin in rematch
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