Joshua vs Povetkin: Lawrence Okolie challenges Matty Askin for British title at Wembley Stadium
Last Updated: 07/08/18 6:29pm
Lawrence Okolie's British title battle with Matty Askin has been added to the Anthony Joshua-Alexander Povetkin undercard at Wembley Stadium.
The heavy-handed Hackney fighter will challenge Askin for the British cruiserweight belt before heavyweight mentor Joshua defends his world titles against Povetkin on September 22, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
Joshua-Povetkin on Box Office
Anthony Joshua defends world titles against Alexander Povetkin at Wembley
Askin halted Welshman Craig Kennedy in six rounds to claim the Lonsdale belt in May 2017, then defended it with a ruthless second-round stoppage of Stephen Simmons in March, and expects to ruin Okolie's unbeaten record within five rounds.
I don't think it will go past four or five rounds, it definitely won't go the distance.
"Every credit to Okolie, he's vacated the Commonwealth title because he wants this fight but he's going to end up flat on his back," said Askin.
"I can punch, I can box, and I can have a fight. I'll do whatever I need to do against him to get the win. I don't think it will go past four or five rounds, it definitely won't go the distance.
"We're both going to come out all guns blazing, it's as simple as that. He's going to come out thinking's he's going to bang me out straight away.
"I'm looking to go out there and tear his head off. I'll be going in there and giving 110 per cent, my 110 per cent beats his 110 per cent every day of the week. I believe that I'm a level above him."
Okolie has swiftly risen the rankings, flooring Isaac Chamberlain twice in a points win to secure the WBA Continental belt in February, and then added the Commonwealth title with a third-round knockout of Luke Watkins in June.
''This announcement is a fantastic day for me," said Okolie. ''My ultimate goal is to be the unified world champion, but before that I want to go down the traditional route, clean up domestically and prove to myself and the fans that I belong at that level.
I want to start making my way towards the world scene and so I need to be able to beat people like Askin to do that.
"Matty Askin is a very experienced fighter who is ranked in the top 10 in the world. I want to start making my way towards the world scene and so I need to be able to beat people like Askin to do that.
"I've won the Commonwealth title in my first two years and I want to keep that trajectory going by winning the British title and hopefully winning a world title before the next Olympics."
Promoter Eddie Hearn said: "Lawrence is continuously surprising me with his desire to step up, but this is by far his biggest jump yet.
"I rate Askin very highly and he has shown much improvement in his last couple of fights. This is another genuine 50-50 fight for the undercard and should be an absolute banger."
Campbell-Mendy II on AJ bill
Luke Campbell receives rematch with Yvan Mendy at Wembley on September 22
This potentially explosive domestic clash is the latest addition to the Joshua bill as Luke Campbell rematches Yvan Mendy in a WBC final eliminator ahead of AJ's main event meeting with dangerous Russian Povetkin.
Further exciting additions to the undercard will be announced soon.
Watch Anthony Joshua defend his world heavyweight titles against Alexander Povetkin at Wembley Stadium, on September 22, live on Sky Sports Box Office.