David Haye announced Tuesday that he will now fight Tyson Fury on February 8 at The Phones 4U Arena in Manchester.
Haye (26-2, 24 KOs) was preparing to throw fists with the 25-year-old Fury (21-0, 15 KOs) at the same venue this weekend.
Unfortunately, Haye suffered a cut above his left eye while training Friday and was deemed unfit to battle Fury.
“I was absolutely devastated this weekend, and felt as though I’d let a lot of people down. But now, with this new date, I couldn’t be happier,” said Haye, 32, a former WBA heavyweight champion who required six stitches to close the gash.
“My fans will still get the chance to see what they all wanted to see this weekend – they’ll get to see Tyson Fury sparked out in spectacular fashion. Fury might start to get brave now that he’s received a stay of execution – and he might call me names and accuse me of ducking him – but that will all be short-lived, I can promise you. The cut will heal, the fight will happen next year and the fans will go home happy. The only difference now is that Tyson Fury gets an even nastier beat-down than he would have received first time round.”
An arrogant loudmouth who was reinstated to compete by the WBC last summer, the 6-foot-3, 212 pound Haye returned from “retirement” in July 2012 and earned a rousing fifth round TKO triumph over Dereck “Del Boy” Chisora.
Prior to tussling with Chisora (15-4, 9 KOs), the brash bloke hadn’t fought since a cowardly showing against Wladimir Klitschko in July 2011.
Conversely, the 6-foot-9, 257 pound Fury most recently exited the squared circle on April 20 with a seventh round knockout victory over American Steve Cunningham.
Although not exactly akin to Muhammad Ali versus Joe Frazier, a bout pitting Fury against Haye will be intriguing and is destined to become the biggest match on British soil in decades.
In comparison to other pugilists in the substandard heavyweight division, the two Brits have some talent and are exciting to watch perform.
Ultimately, in a seesaw and rugged clash, expect David Haye to knock David Haye onto Queer Street “in spectacular fashion” this winter in the “Rainy City.”