David Haye returns to the ring on January 16th against Mark de Mori, but the former WBA heavyweight and undisputed world cruiserweight champion’s sights are unsurprisingly set on some far bigger targets than the Croatia based Australian.
The Bermondsey bomber hasn’t seen competition since his five round demolition of Dereck Chisora back in July of 2012, yet he feels like he is ready to make an assault on the upper-ranks of boxing’s traditional glamour division.
In a recent interview with Sky Sports, however, the heavy-hitting “Hayemaker” revealed that a massive all-British clash with Olympic gold medallist and heavyweight hopeful Anthony Joshua is a fight that he would be interested in pursuing before he makes another run at the world championship scene.
“He had a very big test in his last fight against Dillian Whyte, who was an unbeaten prospect who had beaten AJ in the amateurs”, said Haye. “I was there commentating for Sky and he passed the test with flying colours that night. It was an entertaining fight; he got hit on the chin a good few times and he sucked it up.”
“He showed courage and bottle and he knocked out Dillian Whyte conclusively, no questions asked, and I believe he is one of the best fighters on the planet.”
“But that’s the name of the game for me – I want to compete with these big young guns.”
Aside from the fact that Haye wants to test himself against the new superstars of the heavyweight division, he also added that the fight between he and the Watford whalloper would contain intrigue due to the questions that still remain about both he and Joshua’s punch-resistance.
“If I was to fight him, I’m sure there are people who would think that AJ would beat me and I love the thought of that – getting into a fight where people are not quite sure what happens but if I tag Anthony Joshua, can he take my power?”
“These are all things that are unknown.”
Haye speculated that Joshua’s next test may come against his old foe Dereck Chisora, but that if the gargantuan prospect emerges from that battle in spectacular fashion there would be major interest in a fight between the pair in the summer of 2016.
“I think he is looking to fight in April again, against maybe someone like Dereck Chisora who would be a yardstick and a good test for him. I knocked Dereck Chisora out in five rounds; can AJ knock him out quicker than that?”
Maybe… it will be interesting to see, but I think definitely in the summer or towards the end of the year, if that is a fight that Anthony Joshua would want, then it is a fight that can be made.”
Regardless of whether Joshua steps up to the plate, Haye is excited about the interesting landscape that has developed at heavyweight in recent times. After all, world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, WBC titleholder Deontay Wilder and Joshua all represent fresh and lucrative opponents for Haye going forward.
“We have a whole new crop of exciting heavyweights and I want to chuck my name into the mix and to do that, I have got to not only win, but look good doing so.”