The retirement of perennial underachiever Audley Harrison will only engender apathy from those Brits who desire another world heavyweight champion.
A-Force never reached the heights that many considered attainable following his gold medal at Sydney 2000 and after embarrassing defeats to David Haye, David Price and Deontay Wilder, Harrison has finally hung up the gloves.
While it is undoubtedly a shame that Harrison’s career did not pan out in the way that those of fellow heavyweight Olympians such as Lennox Lewis’ did, in reality he would not have entered the equation when boxing fans disucussed the next potential heavyweight from the UK to conquer the world.
Yet they have plenty of reasons to remain optimistic, and their is no greater cause for that buoyancy than the return of former champion David Haye, who is 5/4 to be the next British heavyweight champion.
Haye announced his comeback against German Manuel Charr, whose only loss came at the hands of Vitali Klitschko. Physically, Haye looks in as good a condition as ever and has proved he is capable of returning from long lay offs when knocking out Dereck Chisora in his last bout.
Still rated as the number one challenger by the WBA, if Haye retains the lightning speed and devastating power that saw him win that title, he will surely earn another shot at a Klitschko.
However, Tyson Fury is potentially closer to earning a title shot after extending his unbeaten record with a seventh round knock-out of Steve Cunningham on his US debut.
Fury used his huge frame to wear down Cunningham in the IBF title eliminator before landing a telling blow to decide the bout. He is now 2/1 to be the next British world heavyweight champ.
Nevertheless, concerns still remain over the British and Commonwealth heavyweight champion’s chin, as he was put down for the second time in his career in that fight. The quality of his opponents to date is also up for debate, and he is yet to fight anyone who comes close to his size.
Liverpudlian David Price looked to be a real hope until being knocked out by Tony Thompson last time. He will look to redeem himself in a rematch and at 6/1 could provide value considering how highly rated he is by his peers.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.