- Mail Sport’s Charlotte Daly has hit out at the heavyweight division this year
- She says it has gone from being our ‘bread and butter’ to being ’embarrassing’
- Anthony Joshua is the Emma Raducanu of boxing: Listen to why on The Hook
Heavyweight boxing has become ’embarrassing’ after a number of top fighters failed to secure highly-anticipated bouts – while others have been ‘greedy’ in pursuit of a bigger purse, Mail Sport’s Charlotte Daly has told The Hook.
Boxing fans have been craving to see the likes of Anthony Joshua fight rivals Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury – while the Gypsy King has seen negotiations with Oleksandr Usyk over an undisputed title fight break down on a number of occasions.
We’ve also had a year that has seen Anthony Joshua’s fight against Dillian Whyte collapse on fight week and Wilder’s talks with Andy Ruiz collapse having failed to come to an agreement.
AJ’s failure to secure a bout with Wilder was a particular bugbear for Daly, who said the division had been ‘disappointing’ after a number of controversies and issues popped up to stop the biggest fights from happening.
She added that boxing’s top division has gone from being the sport’s ‘bread and butter’ to being ‘an embarrassment’.
Mail Sport’s Charlotte Daly could not hide her disappointment with the state of the heavyweight division this year
Stars like Deontay Wilder and Andy Ruiz Jr have failed to agree on a fight this year as Daly hit out at ‘greed’ from the biggest stars
‘I think it’s really disappointing because this year has not been exciting for the heavyweight division as it has for the lighter weight classes,’ she told Mail Sport’s boxing podcast The Hook.
‘I think the division gets in its own way because of contractual disputes and then even failed drugs tests now are coming into play as another factor.
‘I think years ago, the heavyweight division was kind of the bread and butter of boxing and now it’s become somewhat embarrassing. I think that fight with Ngannou, whether you liked it or not, has caused a lot of the backlog.
‘Boxers are being greedy because they want the biggest purse and the biggest money and that’s all they’re focused on.
‘They were also doing a proposed eliminator between the number one and number two, Deontay Wilder and Andy Ruiz, but that never happened because they couldn’t come to an agreement. Why not? Because Ruiz said he wanted a 50-50 purse split and Deontay Wilder was saying he wanted 70-30. Again, that’s greed.
Anthony Joshua is also waiting to set up his next fight in December after a frustrating year
‘So you find yourself in a situation where you’ve got Deontay Wilder and Andy Ruiz not fighting each other, you’ve got Tyson Fury going off and fighting Francis Ngannou in a crossover bout, you’ve got AJ not agreeing terms with Wilder.
‘It’s multiple little things that all add up and then have a knock-on effect to other boxers within the division that’s causing so many issues.’
Fury – who secured a split decision victory over Ngannou last month – is now expected to face Usyk in February next year.
Joshua, meanwhile, is still without an opponent for his protracted December fight after being linked to facing Filip Hrgovic, Otto Wallin or Agit Kabayel.