The Frank Warren column

ONCE AGAIN THE sport of boxing threw up a tale of the unexpected – for many – at the weekend and yet another reminder of the danger of taking your eye off the ball in this game of hard knocks.

Very much like when Anthony Joshua kept talking the talk about Deontay Wilder ahead of what was supposed to be a walkover against Andy Ruiz and then came unstuck, Dillian Whyte spent far too much time keeping Tyson Fury at the forefront of conversations when his focus should have been solely on Alexander Povetkin.

I’ve got no desire to stick the boot in on a man when he is down but I have to look at things from the side of our fighters and what happened on Saturday is precisely why I was so keen on matching Dillian against Daniel Dubois.

You didn’t need to study the form too closely to see this coming. Dillian was down late against Joseph Parker, the same against Oscar Rivas and now Povetkin. Add those to two massive struggles against Dereck Chisora and then match it to the pedigree of the No.1 in the world, Tyson Fury, and you will realise why the prospect of a WBC mandatory defence against Dillian held no great appeal.

Especially if it was to delay the fight that everyone wants to see between Tyson and Anthony Joshua.

The mighty KO inflicted by the Russian has removed a major obstacle in the making of two mega-fights. Tyson has to overcome Wilder and Joshua needs to deal with Kubrat Pulev and after that there is no good reason not to seal the deal.

Once those two fights are hopefully successfully completed by Christmas we will see once and for all who really wants the biggest fight of them all.

We’ve got more heavyweight business of our own happening at the BT Studio on Saturday – BT Sport 1 from 7pm – when the best young heavyweight in the world goes in with the 18-1 Dutchman Ricardo Snijders.

Dubois vs Tetteh

Daniel, of course, has got his huge collision with Joe Joyce firmly on the horizon, but he hasn’t fought this year and, like Joe did, he needs a fight to get himself back in full working order.

Of course there is that danger of looking ahead to fight after, but Daniel is such a focused, driven individual that he will treat the job against Snijders in the same way he would a shot at a world title. The fight against Joe is a natural talking point but Daniel won’t be distracted from the foe in front of him.

It should be a lively night for what will be our fifth post-lockdown production and I expect a few fireworks from our super flyweight livewire Sunny Edwards. He takes on the former Olympian Thomas Essomba and if Sunny doesn’t shine he will be in for a few problems against the tough Cameroonian.

It is no secret how highly I rate Sunny and really enjoy watching him fight. It won’t be too long now before we are putting him in the frame for a world title shot and I believe he will be ready for it.

The credentials of Sam Maxwell will be tested to the full when he goes in against former European champion Joe Hughes. Hughes is a top operator who has been in with many of the best super lightweights and has always given a good account of himself.

Sam will have to show us what he has got and it should be a cracker for the BT Sport viewers, who will also get to see the future of the light heavyweight division in Willy Hutchinson, the turbo-charged lightweight Sam Noakes and a young man who will soon be another big player in the heavyweight division in David Adeleye.

Don’t miss a punch by tuning into BT Sport 1 from 7pm.

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