New WBA world heavyweight champion Daniel Dubois is set to make a defence of his title before the end of this year, with Dillian Whyte emerging as a strong contender to face him.
The 24-year-old South Londoner backed up his status as a huge betting favourite as he knocked out Trevor Bryan in the fourth round on Saturday in Miami.
And Dubois and his trainer Shane McGuigan have both identified Brixton’s Whyte as their dream homecoming bout when he puts his belt on the line.
Whyte, who accused the Greenwich fighter of quitting against Joe Joyce in November 2020, is a promotional free agent. He had been boxing exclusively on Matchroom Boxing shows until he faced WBC champion Tyson Fury at Wembley Stadium in April on a bill staged by Queensberry Promotions, who have had Dubois under contract since he turned professional, and Top Rank.
Whyte was dropped for the full count by a right uppercut in the sixth round.
Queensberry Promotions boss Frank Warren is hoping to strike a deal for an all-South London showdown.
“Why not? That’s a great fight,” Warren told iFL TV. “Contrary to what Dillian thought was going to happen working with us, I think that he had a decent experience. I know that he lost the fight, but we did everything that we said we would do.
“I’ll be speaking to him [about boxing Dubois]. It’s a good yardstick. He [Dubois] will have a fight in late September or early October. There are some great fights to be made for him and Joe Joyce, ultimately for those two to get a rematch on, which is going to be a stadium fight. He wants it and I know Joe wants it.”
Dubois’ biggest win came in low-key surroundings with the Casino Miami Jai Alai a small venue and sparsely populated.
New Yorker Bryan, 32, seemed in survival mode from the opening bell. Dubois upped the tempo and aggression from the third round with a short left dropping him for the full count.
But Warren has defended Dubois being a bonafide world champion despite the governing body having Oleksandr Uysk as their ‘super’ champion.
“The super champion is Usyk and that’s because he has unified titles – that’s how it works,” said Warren. “When you’re a super champion you don’t make any mandatory defences for 18 months, so all the guys are sitting around waiting for it to happen.
“In the meantime Daniel has won this belt and the most important thing is he is now the mandatory challenger with the WBA for the winner of that fight [Usyk is due to rematch Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia in August].”
If the winner of Usyk-Joshua does not go straight into a unification encounter with Fury then they will have to make a mandatory defence.
And that will either by Dubois or Joyce, who is ranked number one by the WBO.
“Whichever way it goes, it all leads to us,” said Warren. “I fancy Daniel against anyone – he’s a big, big puncher. He can box as well, he’s got a great jab.
“I’ve said it before, I think Joshua is made for him. But Joshua has got to get through Uysk first. I always want the Brits to win, this is where it is all happening in the heavyweight division.”
Dubois has 17 KOs on his 18-1 record.
“This [winning a world title] is what we set out to do and we’ve done a part of it, anyway,” he said. “That was a punch-perfect performance with a one-shot knockout. I wasn’t going to be denied that night, I was 100 per cent focused. He didn’t see the [last] punch coming, the ones you don’t see are the ones that hurt you the most.
“Now with this belt it means I’ve got a target on my back. It’s only going to get harder from here on in.
“I want big fights next. I’ve had to work my way up here, so you’ve got to make sure you make the right moves. It is definitely my time now to leave my legacy, one that no-one can take away from me.”
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