The time for talking is about to stop. The time for fighting is upon the two most talked about fighters on the planet right now and a confident Londoner now has to back up his outspoken words on foreign soil. Bermondsey-born David Haye is to be given the opportunity he has craved his entire life and knows that defeat could end it all tonight.
The 30 year-old started his career at what he has called his ‘stepping stone’ – the cruiserweight division and conquered it in less than five years in November 2007 when travelling to France to dethrone formidable two-belt champion Jean-Marc Mormeck on his home soil. The budding actor will now face another daunting trip on his defining night at the 57,000 capacity Imtech Arena in front an expected capacity of over 40,000 fans.
The ‘Hayemaker’ has not been understated in his approach to fighting Wladimir Klitschko. From his planned and public ambush of a charity appearance by Klitschko at a shopping centre in London in 2008, to goading the Ukrainian into having to save face by meeting the two-weight champion at his own convenience before he stepped away from the sport.
It all comes down to tonight for both fighters in the most talked about heavyweight clash since the great Lennox Lewis destroyed a heartless Mike Tyson in 2002 at The Pyramid in Memphis. Haye has the chance to put his name in the annals of boxing history alongside some of the great champions of the past who unified numerous titles in the most lucrative weight-class.
Failure to do so would put Haye down as a nearly-man, an also-ran and is something that the WBA champion cannot contemplate in what is his final four months in the sport. Anything but a bad knockout defeat would guarantee Haye a second chance, but I am sure that he will want the adulation of a spectacular win tonight and to come home to London on Sunday with four world title belts.
I believe that Haye will clinch his goal in Hamburg tonight and return in blaze of glory to England drenched in gold. I believe a destruction of the 6ft 7ins two-time world champion will unfold within five rounds as ‘Dr. Steelhammer’ fails to cope with a swarming Haye. Adam Booth’s plan will be engraved in the Briton’s mind and he will follow it through to the letter to claim the four title belts to return home the undisputed champion.