Prime Minister Boris Johnson yesterday gave renewed hope for big fights taking place in the UK from October.
In the latest easing of lockdown measures, the Prime Minister revealed that fans could be allowed back into stadiums and arenas from the start of October.
The announcement will be welcomed by fight fans, who would have been anxiously waiting for the rearranging of a number of significant bouts that were delayed due to the pandemic.
Among them was Joe Joyce’s clash with Daniel Dubois, which was tentatively moved to 24 October, a date which became increasingly realistic following the announcement at Downing Street.
When the new date was announced, promoter Frank Warren stated: “We all want the fight to take place in October and we are hopeful that the government will give us the all-clear.”
The news also as implications for Anthony Joshua’s mandatory title defence against Kubrat Pulev and Dereck Chisora’s tussle with Oleksandr Usyk, both of which could potentially now take place before the culmination of the year.
Both have contests scheduled for behind closed doors prior to their potential pay-per-view clash, with Joyce taking on Michael Wallisch on July 25 and Dubois battling Erik Pfeifer on August 29.
Announcing the news, the PM stated: “We will pilot larger gatherings in venues like sports stadiums with a view to a wider reopening in the autumn.
“From October, we intend to bring back audiences in stadiums. Again, these changes must be done in a Covid-secure way, subject to the successful outcome of pilots.”