According to his promoter Andrey Ryabinsky, new WBC interim-heavyweight champion Alexander Povetkin has his sights set on ending Tyson Fury’s unbeaten record in 2021 with a proposed mandatory defence, but first has to beat Dillian Whyte in their November 21 rematch.
A month since Povetkin stunned Whyte with a R5 knockout to finish Matchroom’s four-week Fight Camp in Brentwood, the Russian’s promoter has made public their desire to challenge current WBC title-holder Tyson Fury (30-0-1, 21 KOs) next year.
Whyte was previously the mandatory challenger to Fury’s belt, due by February 2021.
Povetkin’s shock victory flipped the script across the UK’s heavyweight scene in a matter of minutes – especially after suffering two knockdowns a round before landing his knockout punch.
After emphatically dethroning Deontay Wilder to win WBC gold in February, the Gypsy King has set his sights on an all-British affair against Anthony Joshua to unify all the world title belts.
First though, both have mandatory title defences to complete – Joshua against Kubrat Pulev, while Fury is occupied with a trilogy clash against Wilder.
That bout is tentatively pencilled in for December 19, while Povetkin’s team are hoping to secure a title showdown in 2021 – if things go to plan during his rematch against Whyte on Nov. 21.
As quoted by Boxing Scene, Ryabinsky said:
“We will work in this direction [fighting Fury]. The fight for the world title is a big event in the career of any fighter, and with every reason for this, of course we will seek a mandatory defence from the WBC.
“You know, [Povetkin] has a very simple answer to [his desire to fight Fury]. Champion you say? Hadn’t lost yet?
Does everyone consider him the strongest in the division? Then of course, I want to box with him! I’ll say it again: Alexander is only happy to box with the strongest opponents.”
Povetkin’s previous defeats, dangers in looking too far forward
Povetkin (36-2-1), who turned 41 on September 2, only has two defences in his 15-year career as a pro. The first was a one-sided title defeat against Wladimir Klitschko by UD in October 2013.
The next? A seventh-round TKO loss by Joshua five years later, in September 2018. It’s clear by his comments last month that Povetkin isn’t looking too far forward.
But are his promoters tempting fate by looking too far ahead, with a determined Whyte (27-2, 18 KOs) keen to right his wrongs in two months’ time? Only time will tell.