DANIEL DUBOIS CHOSE not to rise to the bait when his July 13 opponent Nathan Gorman claimed he did not come off second best in any of the 200-300 rounds the pair sparred during their Team GB days in Sheffield.
The two top young heavies in the business collide with the British title at stake at the o2 Arena on what is anticipated to be a thrilling night of heavyweight action, with Olympic silver medallist Joe Joyce also featuring on the card.
Despite the fact they are former teammates, Dubois and Gorman make no attempt to conceal a simmering contempt for each other but the claim from the Nantwich-based 22-year-old over being the dominant force during their amateur days was met with a nonchalant sneer from the 21-year-old Londoner.
“It means nothing – that statement can go to the wind” scoffed the 11-0 Dubois, the executor of 10 Kos as a pro. “If that is what he thinks, fine. He can think whatever he wants.
“I know what I’ve got to do and I know the mood I will get to closer to the fight. I will be ready.
“I am in this business to make a name for myself and win whatever titles they throw at me. These are guys I’ve got to come through and I will do it. I am pretty cold blooded, so this is just me, this is the hurt business and I enjoy it.”
With the build-up to the big night well and truly underway, Dubois insists his customary cool will be retained, but he does concede this fight stirs up a little more emotion than the others.
“At the moment I am kind of relaxed about it all and I have an idea in my head about how the fight is going to go down. In fact I am sure about it.
“Every fight does excite me, this one maybe so a little bit more. It depends on my mood, I can’t really say so myself sometimes, but I am feeling really good and I feel confident for this one.
“I am ready to get it on.”
Kick Off Presser
DANIEL DUBOIS and Nathan Gorman met face-to-face today to officially announce their vacant British heavyweight title fight at The O2, London on Saturday July 13.
Also on the bill is world ranked London heavyweight Joe Joyce who will feature in a major fight. He first has to come through a test against Alexander Ustinov at The Lamex Stadium, home of Stevenage FC on Saturday May 18.
The blockbuster night will be broadcast live on BT Sport.
Here’s what the unbeaten trio, their teams and promoter Frank Warren had to say ahead of the big summer night of action.
“It’s not the end of the world for the loser between Daniel and Nathan. Dereck Chisora has shown you can come good after losing.
“I wanted to put the fight on this December, but I spoke to the boys and they made the fight. They wanted it.
“There is nothing better than watching two young heavyweights in there. They are exciting young talents and the next generation. This is a throwback fight.
“These guys and Joe Joyce are going to be in the picture when Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua come back from America.
“The British Boxing Board of Control put out the fight between Joe and Daniel. I spoke with Joe’s team and they were looking at their position as mandatory challenger to European champion Agit Kabayel and WBA regular champion Manuel Charr so go in another direction for now. We have been in discussion with Kabayel and if we can’t agree terms that will go to purse bids. Joe will fight a world ranked opponent in July.”
“There has been a lot of talk about this fight, there will be attention but I think Nathan is gonna be my easiest fight so far and after I’ve got him out the way I’m after Joe Joyce and whoever is left.
“There is so much potential in me.
“The GB squad with Nathan is all a blur and the past.
“I have got what it takes to deal with him and it will be easy. Be careful what you wish for. I’m here and will get the job done.
“If I hadn’t shown my skills I wouldn’t be here. It has been hard work, but I am here.
“To go in the record books as British champion is something else and a step towards being top of the division.
“I don’t care about liking Nathan. We’re in the hurt business and that is what I look forward to doing to him on fight night.”
TONY BOWERS (Dubois manager)
“We’re confident. Daniel works hard, has matured and we can see him growing in every angle — power and strength. He is becoming the full package and nothing flusters him.
“He is easy to work with because there is no task he won’t take on and complete. Daniel isn’t worried about what Nathan says and laughs it off. He will put that right on the night.”
“We were on the GB squad for two years together and we did 200 or 300 rounds sparring and I don’t think I lost one.
He thinks I’m his easiest opponent so far, but I bring a lot more than all the other opponents he has fought.
They have just wanted to get the payday and go home. I want to win and be British heavyweight champion.
If me being his easiest fight is motivation fair play. I’m not and he knows it.
This isn’t going to points and I am trying for the KO. I am the underdog and people might say I will get knocked out, but we’ll see.
The all-time greats have been boxers and I have a boxing brain.
Some great names have won the British title and it will be the greatest moment in my boxing life to win it at the o2 Arena.
I’m not sure if Daniel if Frank’s golden goose, but after July 13 I will be his number one boy.”
RICKY HATTON (Gorman’s trainer)
“Fights like this don’t normally happen so soon, but boxing is changing. Building a fight up for three years doesn’t exist anymore because of TV and public demands. Boxers also want to fight the best sooner. I take my hat off to Nathan and Daniel for taking this fight.
As a trainer you hope someone walks through the door like Nathan and when he walked through the door looked like he’d been doing it for years. He has talent, hand speed, can fight in the pocket and he will have to show that against Daniel.
From the minute he walked through the door this was the one fight Nathan wanted.”
“Ustinov is a big old boy and can take stick so I need to put it on him next week. After that it’s a massive fight, but I am not overlooking Ustinov.
The July card shows that the UK heavyweights are taking over. I want to see how Daniel and Nathan get on and take on the winner down the line.
Daniel and Nathan is a 50-50 fight, a massive rivalry and it is gonna be explosive. I’m sitting on the fence. I saw them on the GB squad and could see the rivalry. It’s going to be tasty.”
SAM JONES (S-JAM Boxing)
“The fight with Daniel or Nathan is always going to be there, but he would lose the EBU nomination if we fought Daniel and we’re also mandatory to WBA regular champion. We would even fight Dereck Chisora in July.”
Unbeaten British heavyweights Nathan Gorman and Daniel Dubois will fight for the vacant British heavyweight title on what will be a huge night of boxing at The O2, London on Saturday July 13 live and exclusive on BT Sport. The card will also feature unbeaten Olympic silver medallist Joe Joyce MBE.
Just 21 and 22 respectively, Dubois and Gorman are recognised as two of the top young heavyweights in world boxing and the pair will now put their perfect professional records on the line with the coveted Lord Lonsdale belt at stake.
In a fight that bucks the trend of unbeaten boxers avoiding each other, Dubois v Gorman is the domestic heavyweight dust up that the fans have been crying out for. The O2, London is the place to be to watch it all unfold on July 13, a night of boxing that will be broadcast live and exclusive on BT Sport.
Dubois, for his part, insisted he had absolutely no reservations over accepting a marquee domestic encounter at this early stage of his development.
“As I have always said, whoever is put in front of me I have to go through them and that is what I have done so far.”
“As I proved in my last fight, I want to bring excitement to the heavyweight division for the fans and I promise it will be another explosive night on July 13th.
“I am very confident that I can knock anyone in the world out right now.”
“I would have fought Joe Joyce and now I will fight Gorman. I am confident in my own ability that I can deal with everyone out there and I’ve got what it takes to beat them.
“I believe I am way ahead and better than Gorman and on fight night I will prove it.
“There is no way he will stop me. I accepted this fight straight away and when Frank (promoter Warren) told me about it, it was on.”
Gorman, meanwhile, revealed his surprise that a fight that was tipped to take place at the end of the year or beyond has now become a summer showdown that he didn’t anticipate his heavyweight rival signing up for.
“I am very surprised, to be fair,” he confessed. “I was probably expecting it to be next year – in the summer time probably – and that is what I thought. When the phone call came it took me only a matter of seconds to say yes so it is nearly here now and only a couple of months away.
“I’m over the moon we’ve got the fight on. Fair play to Daniel, I didn’t think he would have accepted it, but he is obviously as keen as I am to fight. There should be plenty of excitement and a I’m sure the fans will love it.
“I can’t see it going 12 rounds and the plan is to go in there and stop him. The winner out of me and Daniel will proceed onto world honours, I’d imagine. The British title will propel you to the world stage.
“It is good for the fans to see the best prospects like me and Daniel fight each other. You can overcook a fight and I think we have now got it at the right time, I really do.
“Me or him didn’t have to take this fight, but why not? I believe it is the right time to make this fight.”
Hall of fame promoter Frank Warren added: “This is a mouth-watering big punching confrontation between two unbeaten young gladiators who have total self-belief in their respective talent.
“At a time that the heavyweight scene’s big three players are fighting in the States, the next generation are taking the stage at The O2 in London at prime time on BT Sport.
“Daniel Dubois and Nathan Gorman duke it out for the vacant British Heavyweight Title while Britain’s Olympic silver medalist Joe Joyce will be looking to show why he was calling for that Anthony Joshua fight last month!
“Between these three giants they have 35 wins and are undefeated so you know this is heavyweight boxing at its best with fireworks guaranteed!
“Joe has a big fight on May 18th against the Russian giant Alexander Ustinov that he has to focus on. We are working with Joe’s team to find the right opponent to secure him a big fight on this fantastic night of heavyweight boxing.”
Tickets for ‘Heavy Duty’ featuring Daniel Dubois v Nathan Gorman for the vacant British Heavyweight Title, plus Olympic silver medalist Joe Joyce go on sale at 12pm on Friday 10th May via AXS.com, Eventim and Ticketmaster and will be priced as below:
£300 – (Hospitality)
£200 – Floor
£150 – Floor
£100 – Tier/Floor
£75 – Floor/Tier
£50 – Tier
£40 – Tier