Heavyweights Derek Chisora and Oleksandr Usyk will finally meet on Oct. 31 after their rescheduled fight was confirmed.
The pair had been due to fight on May 23, but the coronavirus pandemic forced it to be postponed.
Usyk (17-0, 13 KOs) is now fighting in the heavyweight division after an era of dominance at the cruiserweight class.
He began his career at the top end of boxing with a win over Chazz Witherspoon in October last year, when his opponent lasted seven rounds before retiring at the Wintrust Arena in Chicago.
Chisora (32-9, 23 KOs) is a former world title challenger and beat David Price in four rounds in October 2019. Chisora’s career is overseen by former world heavyweight champion David Haye, and the Ukranian is not underestimating him.
“I have really missed boxing,” said Usyk. “I am working hard in my training camp to show a spectacular performance on October 31. I expect a real test in Derek — he is strong, tough and resilient. He is a really big guy and he hits hard.”
Usyk explained why he wanted to move up weights, saying: “As a cruiserweight, I reached the highest heights as undisputed champion and now I am following the same path as a heavyweight. I need to test myself against world class heavyweights on my new road to undisputed and Derek stands in front of me.
“Many people say that Derek is a monster, but deep down he is a kind man. I don’t expect to see that good side of him. I know that he wants to break me, but I am water, wind and fire all together. Derek Chisora, I am coming for you!”
Chisora is similarly keen on getting back into the ring.
“Usyk, I’ve been ready for you all year. It’s my home turf and after such a tough year for everyone, I’m going to give the British public the Halloween party they deserve and finally get revenge for my boy Tony Bellew!” he said.
“Yesterday’s news from the Government was a kick in the nuts, so to bounce back with this fight at this time is so important for boxing,” said promoter Eddie Hearn. “You’ve either got to sit back and say ‘it’s not possible’ or find a way to make it happen, and I’ve got to say a big thanks to Team Usyk, ‘Del Boy’ and David Haye for staying patient and helping get this over the line.
“It’s an absolute firecracker and a fight that’s so important to the heavyweight division over the next few months. We saw a stunning victory from Povetkin recently to shake up the mandatory situation, can WAR Chisora spring the upset and KO the undefeated undisputed world champ? I know he will do everything he can to try and get the victory and this will be another night of heavyweight drama!”