Oleksandr Usyk will face Derek Chisora in a rescheduled Heavyweight clash on October 31, live on Sky Sports Box Office and DAZN in the USA.
Usyk and Chisora were set to collide on May 23, however their showdown was shelved following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Unbeaten pound-for-pound star, Usyk (17-0, 13 KOs) who competes for the second time at Heavyweight following his victory over Chazz Witherspoon last October, reigned as undisputed Cruiserweight world champion.
Usyk, a 2012 Olympic Gold medalist is potentially one victory away from facing unified world Heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, sitting as the WBO mandatory challenger and believes Chisora provides the perfect acid test for him.
“I have really missed boxing,” said Usyk.
“I am working hard in my training camp to show a spectacular performance on October 31.
“I expect a real test in Derek – he is strong, tough and resilient. He is a really big guy and he hits hard.
“As a Cruiserweight, I reached the highest heights as Undisputed Champion and now I am following the same path as a Heavyweight.
“I need to test myself against world class Heavyweights on my new road to Undisputed and Derek stands in front of me.
“Many people say that Derek is a monster, but deep down he is a kind man. I don’t expect to see that good side of him.
“I know that he wants to break me, but I am water, wind and fire all together. Derek Chisora, I am coming for you!”
Former world title challenger Chisora (32-9, 23 KOs) is heading into the clash on the back of three successive victories since his rematch defeat to Dillian Whyte, including two stoppages against Artur Szpilka and David Price respectively.
Chisora, who is guided by former rival-turned manager David Haye has vowed to inflict a first loss on the Ukrainian and avenge Tony Bellew’s devastating eighth round defeat to Usyk in 2018.
🗣️ “DEREK, I’M COMING FOR YOU!”
📺 Watch Chisora take body shots from former rival-turned manager @davidhaye!
— ProBoxingFans (@ProBoxingFans) September 21, 2020
“Helllllo, Usyk, I’m ready for you, helllllo Usyk!,” said Chisora.
“Usyk, I’ve been ready for you all year.
“It’s my home turf and after such a tough year for everyone, I’m going to give the British public the Halloween party they deserve and finally get revenge for my boy Tony Bellew!”
“Yesterday’s news from the Government was a kick in the nuts, so to bounce back with this fight at this time is so important for boxing,” said promoter Eddie Hearn.
“You’ve either got to sit back and say ‘it’s not possible’ or find a way to make it happen, and I’ve got to say a big thanks to Team Usyk, ‘Del Boy’ and David Haye for staying patient and helping get this over the line.
“It’s an absolute firecracker and a fight that’s so important to the Heavyweight division over the next few months.
“We saw a stunning victory from Povetkin recently to shake up the mandatory situation, can WAR Chisora spring the upset and KO the undefeated Undisputed World Champ?
— Matchroom Boxing (@MatchroomBoxing) September 23, 2020
“I know he will do everything he can to try and get the victory and this will be another night of Heavyweight drama!”
“Usyk is under huge pressure,” Alexander Krassyuk, General Director of K2 Promotions.
“He has to prove himself as a true Heavyweight, while Chisora has nothing to lose and is always dangerous. It will be a violent and bloody battle.
“I cannot wait to see them finally collide in the ring on October 31.”
“I see this fight with Usyk as the perfect opportunity for Derek to gate crash the world top 5,” said David Haye of Hayemaker Promotions.
“He’s a massive underdog, with very few experts picking him to cause the upset.
“But I know something they don’t, I know Derek has the size, the chin and more importantly the heart to walk through hell to get this win.
“Ukrainian star Usyk has already showcased his sublime skills on these shores in that dramatic battle with Tony Bellew, while Derek Chisora has rejuvenated his career since teaming up with his former foe David Haye,” Adam Smith, Head of Boxing Development at Sky Sports, said.
“A potential fight with Unified Champion Anthony Joshua is already within Usyk’s grasp, but Chisora has big ambitions of his own, and with Haye by his side, could we see the battle-hardened Brit pull off a stunning upset?
“Usyk against Chisora has all the ingredients for a Heavyweight classic!”
The fight is still awaiting confirmation on a venue, but plans for a crowd remain increasingly unlikely, following the announcement of tighter restrictions by the government, as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Tickets purchased for the postponed event at The O2 in London on Saturday May 23 will be refunded. Please contact your point of purchase if you have any queries.