David Haye still heavyweight champion

David Haye retained his WBA heavyweight title on Saturday night when he knocked out Audley Harrison in the third round at the MEN arena in Manchester, in a bitterly disappointing fight that never lived up to the hype, as Harrison never turned up.

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In the build up to the fight we had heard Harrison tell everyone who would listen, how he would fulfill his destiny and shock the world, well he was certainly shocking in a fight that he didn’t throw a punch in anger at Haye if at all.
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In fact for the first two rounds of the fight Haye himself was reluctant to throw a shot himself, as the two British heavyweights circled each other around the ring, as if waiting to counter the other ones attacks, that never materialised, until Haye opened up in the third and caught Harrison with a right to the Jaw which rocked him, Haye followed up with an accumulation of big right hands to drop a dazed Harrison.
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As Harrison rose to the referees count, he looked liked a rabbit trapped in the headlights, and Haye steamed in to finish the job off with a left right combination and right hook that saw the referee jump in to stop the fight, putting Harrison and the viewers out of their misery.
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Haye had nicknamed Harrison ‘Fraudley’ in the build up to the fight and called him delusional for even saying he was going to win, but Harrison had apparently trained harder than ever and had started to convince even ardent boxing savvy’s that he could eventually fulfill his dream.
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Every boxer who steps into the ring and fights deserves the up-most respect and will always get it, Harrison stepped in the ring but the fighting side of the event didn’t materialise in the biggest opportunity of his life, he was as disappointing as he had ever been.
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Harrison was 3 stone heavier than champion Haye, with a large height and reach advantage and whatever his plan was in the fight, boxing fundamentals and common sense would have advised Harrison to use his long southpaw jab from the offset, even if it was to pepper with it against a smaller opponent whilst working his way into the contest, but with fight stats saying Harrison threw only one connecting punch a jab baffled everyone, in an anti climax of a fight.
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Infact the fight which was being beamed live around the world was not a great advertisement for British Boxing and Haye cannot be blamed for that, he almost looked as if he could finish the fight when he wanted and must have had a few quid on himself in the third.
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“I told my friends I would knock him out in the third round,” Hayes said. “That’s why the first two rounds were so quiet. I knew the boos would turn to cheers.” said Haye afterwards.
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“After I looked him in the eyes at the weigh-in, I knew I would do that to him.” he added.
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Harrison, afterwards seemed to not acknowledge his complete no show, claiming his plan was to take Haye into the later rounds the enormity of his defeat seemed to have not sank in on him.
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“Credit to David, he caught me with some great shots. I beat the count but I was not allowed to carry on.” said harrison after the fight.
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Afterwards he told Sky Box Office: “I didn’t really get going to be honest. Our strategy was to take it into the late rounds and then put pressure on David. I felt the earlier rounds I had hold of his rhythm – he caught me with a good shot, it felt it was behind the head but no excuse, he caught me with a good shot. I went down and I got up. He caught me with another shot and the referee jumped in. I thought he was a bit premature but I definitely started a bit slow.
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“The plan was to take David into the deep end to the later rounds. He just caught me with a good shot. It happens in the heavyweight division. I got up, I beat the count and I felt I was okay to continue. So I didn’t really get a chance to dig in and take it to the later rounds. I didn’t really get chance to put my strategy in.
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“The gameplan was to keep stepping up. My jab was starting to land, getting David to back off. It stopped David from being gung ho – he had to look for his shots. That was the plan, to take it into the deeper rounds and so obviously it wasn’t to go gung ho early on. When I got up and beat the count then my mind kind of switched to sitting there waiting for the shot to go for it but I didn’t have the opportunity.”
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Harrison says he’ll now have to sit down and give serious thought to whether he fights on.
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“I’ve got to sit down now and reflect – I really put the work in during training camp,” he said.
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“I felt really good coming into this fight – great actually. I really felt it was going to be my night but it wasn’t to be my night. So I’m going to have to sit down and see what I do. Obviously my mission is incomplete – my goal is not realised. All credit to David Haye.”
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Haye will now look to take on his heavyweight rivals the Klitschko brothers, Wladimir and Vitali, who between them own the other three versions of the world title. Haye, provisionally, has a mandatory defence of his WBA belt against Ruslan Chagaev in February or March and guaranteed they will go the same way as Harrison.
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“I guarantee those fights against the Klitschkos will happen next year and I guarantee I will give them the same treatment Audley Harrison got,” Haye said.
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Unbeaten George Groves, successfully defended his Commonwealth super middleweight title against the previously unbeaten Kenny Anderson, but Groves found himself on the floor for the first time in his career.
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Groves took an eight-count in the third round when stunned by a left hook from the marauding Scot, before he finally put together a fierce onslaught in the sixth round, forcing Anderson to take a battering on the ropes, before the referee called an halt to Anderson’s objection.
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By Chris Maylett

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  • Davis Haye

    What has Audley Harrison and Michael Jackson got in common?

    They both wear gloves for no apparent reason!

  • Lee Thompson

    Audley Harrison do the right thing and save that Playground you were advertising on your t shirt. If its money it needs then a snippit of your purse should cover any costs needed. Audley you should have went for it man in the biggest chance you will ever get in your life! The heavyweight Championship of the World! You should have just gone for it!