Once again the O2 Arena in Greenwich, London will host a British Heavyweight title fight between two of our hottest prospects.
Rewind to December 2015 to when the same venue staged a brilliant domestic heavyweight dust up between the former unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, 14-0 at the time and Dillian Whyte for British title.
The comparisons are uncanny as both were still inexperienced with undefeated records, a bit rough around the edges and had a tasty rivalry that made it an absorbing encounter.
This Saturday night is very much the same with Daniel Dubois (11-0) being tipped by many experts to have a bright future in the glamour division, just like AJ. He’s opponent Nathan Gorman (16-0) has not had the same exposure as his domestic rival which was exactly like Whyte who had an identical pro record in 2015.
It’s been a tough three and half years for the South-Londoner since his sole defeat to Joshua with many boxing fans and pundits hoping that he finally can get that crack at a world title. Next Weekend he takes on Oscar Rivas in the same venue that he now calls home. Where as Anthony Joshua had gone from strength to strength following his victory that night until his recent fall from grace in a horror show against Andy Ruiz Jr only last month.
Whether the Greenwich lad Dubois and Nathan Gorman can follow in the same footsteps remains to be seen but we will find out if they have the minerals necessary to take that next big step. This one fight will not define their careers, although it will determine which route either fighter will take once the result becomes a reality.
The British heavyweight title is as prestigious as they come with the likes of Henry Cooper, Lennox Lewis, Joe Bugner, Tyson Fury and many other great fighters all holding that strap at some point in their careers.
Although the bookies do have Dubois as a 4-7 favourite for the bout, Gorman will have the advantage with Manchester boxing legend Ricky Hatton guiding the 23-year-old through the fight. With the greatest of respect to Martin Bowers – of the Peacock Gym – who will be in the opposite corner, it’s hard to not favour the advice of Hatton over Bowers. Due to the fact that both fighters are babies in terms of experience their corners will play such a vital part in the outcome of the fight.
Dubois has shown a vulnerability with his stamina while Gorman has been able to clock up some much needed rounds in only 16 pro fights so far, 76 to be exact while Dubious only 33. Of course, this is rightfully being billed as the boxer verses the puncher and we all know that one punch can make all the difference in the heavyweight game. With that being said a better boxer will normally prevail over a puncher and Gorman has shown to have the better boxing ability.
At 21-years-old Dubois is still very raw and needs more time to develop before the can fulfil his potential. It may only be a 2-year age gap but those extra miles on the clock at such a young age makes all the difference. Because of that fact and with a guy like Hatton in his corner, it’s difficult to see past a Gorman points victory or even a late stoppage due to Dubois running on empty.
Whatever happens and whoever wins we must not forget about the kid that’s picked up his first loss. It is important, vital in fact, that we as boxing fans do not forget the guy who picks up his first defeat. We are talking about two young men that have shown courage and a lot of bollocks to take a fight that they didn’t need to take for our viewing pleasure. Let’s hope they can both do themselves justice and produce another exciting night of boxing, like what we experienced in 2015.