Boxing


Harrison Vs. Klitschko Or Haye Doubtful: Bernd Boente Not Interested In Audley, Adam Booth Not Keen Either!

by James Slater - Just yesterday, a news story broke telling of how Audley Harrison's manager, Eddie Hearn, had begun talks with the manager of the two Klitschkos and with the manager of David Haye about a fight with his man. Excitedly talking about how a world title shot was close for Harrison, Hearn spoke of an October date. Harrison, meanwhile, announced how he had given up his European title, and this move led some to feel a world title shot was indeed on the cards..

It seems, though, that such thinking was premature.

Responding to Hearn's announcement that he was in talks with the Klitschkos regarding a date with "A-Force," Bernd Boente is quoted today as saying that such talk is not true, and that there is "no interest" in a Harrison challenge of either Vitali or Wladimir.

"I read the article on Fightnews that Audley and his management write about an interest of us fighting him," Boente told fightnews.com. "I want to confirm that this is not true. Barry Hearn approached me before and after Vitali's last fight but I told him that there is no interest. Harrison has beaten [Michael] Sprott, a sparring partner of the brothers, and that's all."

Ouch!

Simply dismissing the idea of a Harrison-Klitschko fight with not much more than a swift brush of the hand, Boente has certainly put "A-Force" and his team in their place. So, with regards to the possible October world title shot for the former Olympian, there remains just one option: a fight with fellow Londoner and WBA champ David Haye. But not so fast.

In an article that has been published in The Times, Adam Booth, manager, of course, of Haye, has revealed that Boente is not the only manager who is lukewarm (to put it nicely) about the idea of one of his heavyweight champions defending against the 38-year-old. Booth, aware of how much backlash Haye would receive from the overwhelming majority of fight fans worldwide if he did fight Harrison, has gone as far as to say he "hates" the fight.

"As a boxing fan, I hate the fight, because Audley has not boxed anyone in the top-20," Booth told The Times. "But I know that maybe David didn't deserve a shot at [Nikolai] Valuev. Within Britain it would be a fight that people would love to see, but [Haye] will receive a lot of criticism worldwide. He will be called a coward for not fighting the Klistchkos and his credibility will be shot to pieces."

Booth went on to say he doesn't feel Harrison "would last four rounds with either of them" [the three reigning champions] and he also said Haye's main priority, as far as his next fight, remains a unification bout with either of the two Klitschko brothers.

So, it seems that unless Team-Haye is willing to suffer the consequences the taking of a lucrative all-British showdown with Harrison will result in, Audley is back where he was a few months back: nowhere near a world title fight.

Such a suggestion may seem harsh on Audley, but even harsher is the fact that most fight fans will not care. What the paying fans want to see is the heavyweight fights that matter, and with Booth's admission that Haye has to fight the Klitschkos (or face being called a coward if he doesn't) we are perhaps close than ever to seeing "The Hayemaker" get it on with one of the two brothers.

It looks like Wladimir, the Ring magazine, IBF and WBO ruler, will face long-time mandatory Alexander Povetkin next (Sept. 11th in Germany according to Boxrec.com), but could Haye's next bout, planned for October or November, be against Vitali, the WBC king? Booth said there are a number of options for Haye's next fight, with the Klitschkos atop a list that also includes a Valuev rematch (yawn), a fight with Tomasz Adamek and the Harrison match.

I think most fans will agree, the Haye-Harrison option is by far the least attractive.

Article posted on 10.06.2010



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