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Dillian Whyte Rocks Alexander Povetkin In Gibraltar, Wins Interim Heavyweight Title

After months of waiting to avenge his loss to Alexander Povetkin, Dillian Whyte left Gibraltar without a shadow of a doubt that he is still one of the heavyweight division’s most dangerous contenders.

Fighting in Gibraltar, Whyte scored a stoppage win over Povetkin in the fourth round to win the interim WBC heavyweight title and become the mandatory challenger to the WBC world title. Whyte took advantage of Povetkin’s erratic movement and balance throughout the fight to deliver his first win inside the distance back in 2018.

From the start of the fight, Povetkin looked out of balance with his movement. Less than a minute in, Povetkin’s legs were wobbly and he was moving around the ring looking a bit dazed. Although he regained his balance, Whyte continued to look for an early KO punch, throwing heavy right hands upstairs.

Whyte’s right hand landed clean on Povetkin’s face halfway through round three and briefly staggered him. Capitalizing on the momentum, Whyte hurt Povetkin with another right hand in the following round, causing the Russian to lose his balance once again. Later in the round, Whyte hurt Povetkin with a series of heavy hands upstairs and sent him to the canvas. As Povetkin was getting back up, the referee stopped the fight as Povetkin’s corner was throwing in the towel.

After the bout, Whyte spoke on his future, saying he’d like to get back in the ring soon. Whyte is now the mandatory challenger to Tyson Fury’s WBC world title, but Fury is in talks to fight unified champion Anthony Joshua. Fury and Joshua are looking to secure a site for the fight that would crown an undisputed heavyweight champion. Should that fight fall through, Whyte could be in line to challenge for Fury’s title should the WBC enforce a title fight between the two. Even if Joshua doesn’t fight Fury next, there is always the likelihood of a third fight between Fury and Deontay Wilder, a fight more likely to happen than Fury vs. Whyte.

Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn stated he’d like to get Whyte fighting this summer with the goal of still pushing for a world title fight down the road. However, the Fury vs. Joshua talks have put the heavyweight division in a holding pattern, making a title fight hard to predict for Whyte.

The fight between Whyte and Povetkin is a rematch of their August 2020 bout when Povetkin knocked out Whyte to capture an interim WBC heavyweight title. That knockout dashed Whyte’s hopes of getting a heavyweight title opportunity anytime soon. Whyte opted for an immediate rematch set for last November. However, the fight was called off after Povetkin tested positive for COVID-19.

Whyte was training in Portugal, but logistical issues with getting him out of the country and in quarantine and being able to make it to the fight on March 6 among other things made promoter Eddie Hearn make the decision to change the date.

Ted Cheeseman Delivers Highlight-Reel KO In Fight Of The Year Contender

In the co-main event, English heavyweight champion Fabio Wardley continued his development with a fifth-round KO win over Eric Molina. Wardley was briefly hurt from a straight right hand by Molina in the fifth, but Wardley quickly recovered. Wardley landed a short left hook in the middle of an exchange moments afterwards and knocked Molina out with a right hand.

Wardley has now won all 11 of his pro bouts and picked up his third win in the past seven months, which started with an English heavyweight title victory over Simon Vallily back in August 2020.

One of the best fights of the year so far took place before the main event when Ted Cheeseman delivered a highlight-reel knockout against James Metcalf. Cheeseman knocked Metcalf out with a big left hand right as the bell to end the 11th round sounded to become the new British junior middleweight champion.

Cheeseman had a chance to end the fight early when he hurt Metcalf with a right hand in round four. Metcalf’s legs buckled but never allowed him to get to the canvas.

Metcalf fought his way out of trouble and even hurt Cheeseman in the seventh round. Metcalf actually hurt Cheeseman in the 11th round, but wasn’t able to stop him. Cheeseman put the exclamation point with a sensational left hook that knocked Metcalf out before the bell sounded to end the round.

The undercard also featured the pro debut of Campbell Hatton, the son of popular former British world champion Ricky Hatton. Campbell was successful in his first fight, scoring a four-round decision win against Jesus Ruiz.

Campbell dominated the fight with his left hand, which targeted Ruiz’s body. Ruiz got hurt from the constant damage done to his body and could only muster a few combinations throughout the fight. Campbell showcased solid body work, but was anxious around the ring at times. Campbell even admitted after the fight that he had to deal with the nerves that came with a pro debut.

Elsewhere on the undercard, Michael McKinson picked up the biggest win of his career when he defeated Chris Kongo to win the WBO Global welterweight title. McKinson won with scores of 97-93, 96-94 and 95-94. The first two fights of the card saw Nick Webb stop Erik Pfeifer in two rounds to extend his win streak to four victories and unbeaten prospect Youssef Khoumari stop Kane Baker in the fifth round.

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