David Haye backs Daniel Dubois to learn plenty from first points win

BY RICHARD CAWLEY
richard@slpmedia.co.uk

Daniel Dubois was taken the distance for the first time in his professional career at the weekend – with David Haye calling it a big learning process for the exciting heavyweight.

The Greenwich-based boxer faced seasoned survivor Kevin Johnson at Leicester Arena on Saturday night and won a 100-91 points verdict.

It is the first time that the undefeated Dubois, 21, has been past five rounds with his eight previous bouts being KO finishes.

But Bermondsey’s two-weight world champion Haye, doing punditry for broadcaster BT Sport, felt it was a great learning process for the former GB amateur.

“If he’d have paced himself a little bit he may have got the stoppage,” said Haye, no stranger in his career to explosive finishes. “He’ll be so much of a better fighter for going through that.

“It wasn’t a hard fight for him but pace-wise he’ll have learned a lot.”

Johnson, nicknamed Kingpin, was anything but easy for Dubois to bowl over.

The 39-year-old from Georgia has only been stopped twice in his 43 fights – Anthony Joshua cutting him down in two rounds in 2015 while Croatian Petar Milas wore him down in eight earlier this year.

Johnson had no ambition to try and claim a 33rd win. He covered up on the ropes and managed to absorb the thudding shots as Dubois battered away.

Daniel Dubois

But the South Londoner was never in danger of forcing a stoppage from referee Shaun Messer.

“He was a tough, slippery guy,” said Dubois, who had been sparring with Joshua before his recent Wembley showdown with Alexander Povetkin.

“He took some good shots, I give him credit for that.

“He is negative, but effective. I need to look back and see what I could have improved on. But we move on. He was on the ropes all the time.

I can’t blame him [for that approach].

I was trying to cut off the ring. My corner were telling me to relax, not to rush – I have got 10 rounds. I was never out of breath. It was 10 rounds of workmanlike boxing.

“I always want a knockout, it’s great – but when you have to box and win then I did what I had to do.”

Croydon’s Joshua Buatsi is set to make a defence of his WBO international light-heavyweight title at Newcastle’s Metro Radio Arena on Saturday.

The 25-year-old light-heavyweight (7-0) won the belt with a first-round stoppage of Andrejs Pokumeiko in July.

Wimbledon’s Louis Adolphe is also due to be in action on the same night but on a Cyclone Promotions show at Bethnal Green’s York Hall.

The 26-year-old welterweight is scheduled to face journeyman William Warburton, who has lost 142 fights in a 178-bout career – only two of those by stoppage.

Adolphe’s record stands at 8-1. He was disqualified at Wembley Arena in October 2017 when he knocked Nathan McIntosh down as referee Howard John Foster called break.

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