Remember when talented Audley Harrison, fresh off his 2000 Olympic gold medal win and with a seemingly glorious pro career waiting for him, boasted how he could win the British heavyweight title after just five fights? Well, as we know, “A-Force” never managed it; but 19 year old Daniel Dubois might try soon.
Speaking with The Mail, Dubois’ promoter Frank Warren said he believes the tall, athletic and powerful prospect can do it and that the rule which does not permit a fighter under the age of 21 to challenge for the British title should be changed. According to the piece, Warren wants Dubois, 3-0(3) to make the step from four-rounders to a ten round bout on the upcoming July 8 card topped by WBO middleweight champ Billy Joe Saunders.
“Boxing has changed,” Warren, the best boxing promoter in British boxing, said. “With super-young athletes like Daniel it is no longer about age and experience. It is about ability and power. It wasn’t Daniel who had to pick himself up when he sparred with AJ. The under 21 rule is an archaic left over regulation.”
No possible opponent has been named for Dubois in his would-be British title shot, but the belt is currently vacant so it’s possible we could see the towering puncher fight for the belt next. And as far as the AJ sparring reference Warren made, Dubois is said to have decked world heavyweight champ Joshua in sparring recently. But sparring, and fighting four-rounders, is one thing; is Dubois really ready, after just four fights, for the likes of Sam Sexton or Gary Cornish, at title level?
Maybe he is and maybe, as Warren said, the sport has changed. We’ve seen top-class fighters win world titles after less than ten pro bouts, so maybe Dubois, who has yet to be tested at pro level, can snatch the British title already.
Dubois will definitely box on the Saunders card in London, if not for the British title then maybe for the southern area belt. Fans can’t get enough of the exciting young puncher who says his goal is to go down as the greatest British heavyweight ever. Matched fast, we could see Dubois in there with big and recognisable names sooner rather than later.