Dillian Whyte begins the long road back to what he hopes will be world title contention with a fight vs unbeaten American Jermaine Franklin in London later this year with a date of November 26 now locked in.
Whyte finally got his long-awaited shot at Tyson Fury for the WBC and lineal heavyweight titles at Wembley Stadium back in April. But the Londoner (now 28-3) produced a very underwhelming performance as he was knocked out in six rounds by the peerless ‘Gypsy King’.
The 35-year-old ‘Body Snatcher’ appeared to freeze on his big night, and now he must regroup for a ring return which will be streamed live globally by DAZN.
Franklin presents intriguing challenge
Franklin presents an intriguing challenge for Dillian at Wembley’s OVO Arena – he is 21-0 with 14 wins inside distance, but has only fought once in the last three years. That was a stoppage of journeyman Rodney Moore in May and if it is an accurate illustration of where Franklin lies in the pecking order, Whyte should notch a convincing win. He is taking nothing for granted though.
“It’s great to be back, doing what I love doing,” said the Brixton man. “I can’t wait to get into the ring and show the world that when push comes to shove I can get right back up in Wembley and remind everyone why I was WBC number one for over four years.
“As an undefeated heavyweight, Franklin is a dangerous guy but I’m going to teach him quite a few lessons at the OVO on November 26. Most importantly, I’m going to teach him how to lose.”
Franklin meanwhile has never fought outside the U.S. yet, but said: “I’m super hyped to fight in the UK. They love boxing and I plan on making a statement when I beat Dillian. I want them to be loud and love my boxing style and have them embrace me as the people’s champ. The world will see the real Jermaine Franklin Jr.
“Dillian is a warrior. He has heart and he’s been with the best. It’s time for him to step aside and let the ‘989 Assassin’ make him body number 22 on my body count. The kind of fight I expect is a brawl. Dillian wants to prove he’s got something left in the tank. I want to show him I’m the future of boxing and for USA Heavyweights.
“When I beat Dillian I want this victory to be followed with a title shot or a major fight to take me to the title. I’m like Holyfield. I’m a warrior. I’m from the hood. You have to take my heart and that will never happen in the ring. I have speed and power. I have no problem taking a punch to land my own. I am America’s next Heavyweight Champion.”
Wardley heads cracking undercard
An action-packed undercard sees fast-rising Ipswich Heavyweight Fabio Wardley (14-0, 13 KOs) clash with Nantwhich’s Nathan Gorman (19-1, 13 KOs) for the vacant British Title, former WBA Light-Heavyweight World Title challenger Craig Richards (17-3-1, 10 KOs) take on Latvian warrior Ricards Bolotniks (19-6-1, 8 KOs) in an exciting match-up at 175lbs and Derby’s Sandy Ryan (4-1, 2 KOs) challenge Mexico’s Magali Rodriguez (20-6-2, 9 KOs) for her WBC Silver Super-Lightweight Title.