Top ten heavyweight Mark de Mori says another withdrawal by David Haye before their January 16 clash would be unthinkable for the former world champion’s career.
The 33 year-old battles Haye at the O2 Arena in what will be the ex-cruiserweight king’s first fight in over three years, and comes on the back of three high-profile contests collapsing. Bouts with Manuel Charr and Tyson Fury (twice) fell through due to injuries or training ailments suffered by Haye prior to 2014 – which led to a fan backlash against the ‘Hayemaker’ in the months after successful shoulder surgery.
Haye now attempts to have one final run at regaining the world title and de Mori has been chosen as the gatekeeper to a world ranking and potential blockbuster clashes with Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury in 2016.
Croatia-based Aussie de Mori is deep in camp for the Haye clash but has no worries about the fight falling through and believes his upcoming opponent will have ensured the right adjustments have been made to avoid further injuries.
“Listen, there’s always a chance that someone could get injured, but I don’t think David Haye faked those injuries,” De Mori exclusively told World Boxing News.
“Maybe he was training too hard too close to the fight. It’s a professional fight, of course you have to train hard, but you’ve also got to protect yourself from injury. Maybe he’s going to adjust his training this time around and not spar so close to the fight.
“I think if he pulled out of this fight, and people are already a little bit fed up with him, I think if it did it again it’s pretty hard to come back from with the general public.
“I’ve already said to him, ‘You’re a celebrity and a millionaire, why are you doing this?’
“He seems to think he can be world heavyweight champion again, but we’ll see when the fight happens. We don’t know if he’s going to be better or worse, but there’s also that question mark about me as the unknown guy.”
Asked whether he expects the crowd to be at capacity in London next month, de Mori added: “The promoter said to me every fight he’s worked on has been a sell-out, and despite me being an unknown, it seems to have taken off.”