Povetkin to decide soon on Whyte rematch on January 30th
By Charles Brun: Alexander Povetkin is expected to make a decision soon on whether he’ll be able to face Dillian Whyte in a rematch on January 30th after coming down with COVID-19 last November.
Povetkin and Whyte had been scheduled to meet up in a rematch on November 22nd, but those plans were dashed with him getting sick.
Whyte was upset about it, as he badly wanted to avenge his humiliating knockout defeat last summer. The loss destroyed Whyte’s hopes of getting a lucrative world title shot against WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury.
Dillian wants to regain his WBC mandatory position
Whyte was the WBC mandatory to Fury at the time of the fight, but that was wiped out with his loss. Dillian is hoping that if he beats Povetkin, he’ll recapture the WBC mandatory spot and put pressure on the World Boxing Council to force his title shot in 2021.
That’s probably not going to happen, but Whyte would be in a position to challenge for a world title in 2022 against the winner of the second Anthony Joshua vs. Fury fight.
But before that can happen, Whyte needs to beat Povetkin, which isn’t going to be easy to do. As we saw last time, Whyte didn’t have the chin to defeat Povetkin.
The 41-year-old Povetkin (36-2-1, 25 KOs) is back in training, but he’s taking things slow to get his form back.
With the tentatively set rematch with Whyte (27-2, 18 KOs) targeted for January 30th, the former WBA heavyweight champion Povetkin doesn’t have much time to get in top form before then.
Trying to come back from an illness like the COVID-19 is obviously tricky, and one can’t rush things because it takes time. We don’t know what the condition Povetkin’s lungs are in after fighting this dreaded disease.
Sadly, Whyte, 32, is suspicious about Povetkin’s illness and believes that he was never sick with COVID-19. Dillian believes that Povetkin needed more time to recover from their punishing fight earlier this year, on August 22.
Whyte knocked Povetkin down twice in that contest in the fourth and appeared to be on his way to victory in the 5th when tragedy struck. Povetkin landed a scorching left uppercut that knocked Whyte unconscious.
Povetkin returning to training
“Sasha is feeling well and is slowly entering the training process, but not at full capacity,” said Povetkin’s promoter Andrey Ryabinskiy.
“Soon we will have to decide whether the fight with Whyte will take place at the end of January, the question is whether we will meet these deadlines with the preparation.”
Well, if Whyte has to wait a little longer for his rematch with Povetkin, there’s not much he can do about it. If Whyte wants to get a fight in before then, he’s obviously welcome to do that.
Michael Hunter has already volunteered to face Whyte, and Filip Hrgovic would jump at the chance to fight him as well. Charles Brun can’t imagine Whyte agreeing to face either of those two dangerous heavyweights, considering that if he loses to them, his career will be on skidrow.
“I personally don’t think he’s got Covid,” said Whyte to Sky Sports on him doubting that Povetkin was ever ill. “I think he just needed more time to get ready because he took a lot of damage in the first fight.
“The facts are simple – Sasha got coronavirus, and we were forced to postpone the fight,” said Ryabinskiy in responding to the suspicious Whyte.
More Boxing News:
- Whyte wants Povetkin 2 fight overseas, says Hearn
- Hearn talks Povetkin vs. Whyte 2 & Avanesyan vs. Kelly
- Alexander Povetkin vs. Dillian Whyte 2 on March 6th
- How does Whyte vs. Povetkin 2 play out?