World of Boxing, promoters of Russian heavyweight Alexander Povetkin, say there is “no confirmation or information” yet on a rematch with Dillian Whyte, amid Eddie Hearn’s claims a date is fixed for November.
READ MORE: ‘Out COLD!’ Boxing world stunned as Russian heavyweight Alexander Povetkin FLATTENS Dillian Whyte with HUGE uppercut (VIDEO)
Hearn, who heads UK promotion team Matchroom Boxing, said in an interview with IFLTV that he would want a rematch between Povetkin and Whyte in November 14 or 21, to avoid the fight taking place 2021.
Following underdog Povetkin’s come-from-behind KO win in the fifth round against much fancied Whyte on August 22, the question of a rematch clause in the contract was viewed with cynicism and as unfair on the Russian, as the bout was originally supposed to determine a contender for the WBC title, currently owned by flamboyant champion Tyson Fury.
However, in a Moscow press conference the week following the fight, World of Boxing head Andrey Ryabinksy said the clause existed, was signed for and would be honored, due the option being in the financial interest of his fighter.
“Why did we want the rematch clause? Because first and foremost, we need to look after the interests of our boxer,” Ryabinskiy said. “For Povetkin, he has the chance to earn decent money out of the current situation and if we have a chance to do that for our boxer, of course we will do that.”
Ryabinskiy: ‘The rematch clause was in the contract, we agreed b/c we wanted it, WBC ruled the fight would determine a no. 1 contender, so the rules of the game have changed. We don’t know yet, we’ll figure it out, we’ll see’ #Povetkin @Tyson_Fury @DillianWhyte pic.twitter.com/vuZMf9oMoQ
Hearn was full of praise for the commitment to their word by the Russian contingent in his interview. “There’s not many in boxing that honour contracts and honour obligations and their word,” he said.
“Andrey Ryabinksiy, Vadim Kornilov and World of Boxing, even if we didn’t have a contract, and we had a shake of the hand or an agreement, they would still do it. These are proper, proper people.
“They don’t want to wait till February/March so we will go November 14, or November 21.”
However, World of Boxing told RT that as yet, they have not received confirmation about an exact date, although it is expected this is because arrangements for a rematch will be taken care of by Hearn.
“We have no confirmation or information,” World of Boxing told RT Sport. “There has been contact [with Hearn]. There will be a rematch, we just don’t know when. About November 21 we don’t have any information.”
Ryabinksy earlier expressed his wish for the fight to take place in Russia, as there had long since been a boxing event of such magnitude in the country.
Whyte, who had been banking on easing past the older fighter on his way to a world title shot, was knocked clean out by a meticulously manoeuvred Povetkin uppercut in five rounds despite dropping the older Russian fighter twice in the previous stanza at Matchroom Fight Camp on August 22.
Povetkin, who turned 41 on Wednesday, confirmed in the same Moscow presser the week following his win that he is “fully focussed” on a rematch with Whyte and not Fury or any of the other top heavyweights.
Ryabinsky confirmed that the most financially profitable position for his fighter would be to take a second fight with Whyte rather than endure a protracted position as number one contender which could take anything up to two years to yield a title shot.
Both parties are keen to work out a rematch for as early as possible, which would be logistically and promotionally mutually beneficial, given Hearn’s cash cow, the WBO, IBF and WBA heavyweight champ Anthony Joshua, is penned to face Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev on December 12.
Hearn said Whyte is “obsessed” with winning the rematch, and believed a quick return to the ring will not be detrimental to his man, whom he believes did not take significant punishment despite the KO.
The venue for the rematch will most likely be London’s O2 Arena, although UK Covid-19 restrictions and percentages on crowd attendance may play a part on the final selection.