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Boxing alive and well in the UK

By John F. McKenna (McJack):

In the lead up to the Hayemaker’s fight with Klitschko there was a spike of interest in boxing. And like him or hate him David Haye had a lot to do with that rejuvenation.

Obviously David Haye’s fans were tremendously disappointed at his July 2 loss to Klitschko. Despite being an underdog in the rest of the world, Haye was favored to win in his native country. English boxing fans have long been accused of thinking with their hearts instead of their heads and they make no apology for that.

It was thought by many that after Haye’s one sided and lackluster performance against Klitschko that British interest in boxing would at least temporarily decline. That does not appear to be the case.

Up and coming heavyweight contender Tyson Fury’s unanimous win over Dereck Chisora this past Saturday night at Wembley Arena demonstrated that British fans are only too eager to watch an entertaining matchup. TV ratings for the fight did very well, better than expected and beat out the normally high ratings of prime time shows that were on in the same time slot.

Part of what may have been a boost for the Fury – Chisora fight is that boxing fans are always looking for a new star to replace one that has crashed and burned, in this case David Haye. In addition Tyson Fury seemed to be emulating David Haye with his trash talking. Boxing fans most likely wanted to see if Fury could back up his big words.

As much as boxing fans complain about trash talking by boxers, it apparently works. David Haye not only talked his way into a Mega Bucks heavyweight championship fight, he got a 50-50 split. Just as politicians run negative campaign adds fighters trash talk because it works. People either go to see if the trash talker can back up his words, or they pay to see him lose.

For whatever reason boxing continues to survive in the UK and fighters like Tyson Fury, Amir Khan and numerous others will continue to be a huge draw.

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