Skip to content

Daniel Dubois for shock win? 'Oleksandr Usyk won't know what's hit him', says promoter Frank Warren

Oleksandr Usyk will defend his unified WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight belts against Britain's Daniel Dubois, his mandatory challenger, later this month; Dubois' promoter Frank Warren believes the Briton can spring a monumental upset. He explains why

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Oleksandr Usyk started rapping after facing off against Daniel Dubois following a press conference for their unified heavyweight title fight in August (Warning: video contains flashing images)

Ambitious British contender Daniel Dubois will be looking to upset unified champion Oleksandr Usyk later this month, with the world's top heavyweights set for action over the weeks to come.

Promoter Frank Warren believes Dubois can shock the formidable Usyk, and the world, on August 26 and beat the formidable Ukrainian to win the IBF, WBO and WBA titles when they fight in Poland.

"I'm confident because I believe in him," Warren told Sky Sports.

Daniel Dubois recovered from three first-round knockdowns to beat Kevin Lerena
Image: Dubois recovered from three first-round knockdowns to beat Kevin Lerena

"Usyk is a very, very good fighter. He's a great cruiserweight. He's done everything that's been asked of him. But I look at fights, I don't just look at their last performance."

Usyk is returning to the ring after 12 months out since defeating Anthony Joshua on points for a second time to defend his unified titles.

But Warren noted that Usyk has demonstrated vulnerabilities in previous fights, particularly when faced with relentless pressure.

"When he fought against Derek Chisora, there was nothing in that fight until Chisora ran out of gas towards the end when he wore him out. But there wasn't anything in that fight early on," the promoter said.

Also See:

"I look at [Usyk] against AJ for the first fight. AJ wasn't at the races. He was a bit better in the second fight, but for me AJ's not firing like he was anyway. He showed that in his last fight. He's not the fighter he once was."

What to watch on Sky Sports this week

Enjoy live action from the EFL, The Hundred and more with NOW

Sheffield Wednesday vs Southampton – August 4 – LIVE on Sky Sports Football
Celtic vs Ross County – August 5 - LIVE on Sky Sports Football
Kilmarnock vs Rangers – August 5 - LIVE on Sky Sports Football
Leicester vs Coventry – August 6 - LIVE on Sky Sports Football
Leeds vs Cardiff – August 6 - LIVE on Sky Sports Football
Sunderland vs Ipswich – August 6 - LIVE on Sky Sports Football
The Hundred – August 1 to 27 – LIVE on Sky Sports Cricket
Netball World Cup – July 28 to August 6 – LIVE on Sky Sports Action
Wyndham Championship – August 3 to 6 – LIVE on Sky Sports Golf

The promoter firmly believes that Dubois' youth, strength and determination can threaten Usyk.

Dubois has been rebuilding from losing to Joe Joyce in 2020, although Kevin Lerena did cause the Londoner some problems in his last bout.

Daniel Dubois and Oleksandr Usyk faced off ahead of their heavyweight fight
Image: Dubois and Usyk face off ahead of their heavyweight fight

He went down on three occasions in the first round and suffered a knee injury, but rallied to halt Lerena in three rounds.

"Daniel in his last fight, I don't think he warmed up properly and he got caught on the top of the head," Warren said. "You've seen on numerous occasions the vulnerability when someone gets caught like that.

"He got caught, went over and, as he did, he tore his ligament, which is a fact. He's had it operated on. He gritted his teeth and came through that. He took a count twice, didn't get knocked down [again]. Took a count twice and then gritted his teeth and done what he had to do.

"That answered a lot of questions."

This will be Dubois' first fight with new trainer Don Charles but Warren emphasised that the young Briton has the potential to deliver a monumental upset.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Usyk has questioned Tyson Fury's decision to fight former UFC champion Francis Ngannou

"After the fight, the result will be the result, no matter what I say. But if I genuinely didn't think he had a great chance, I would have held up on it and I wouldn't have pushed forward for the mandatory defence. I would've held up, but I fancy him big time in the fight," the veteran promoter said.

Eighteen of Dubois' 19 victories have come by way of knockout. He is undeniably heavy-handed and Warren feels the power he possesses, along with the timing of the bout, are factors that could lead to Usyk's downfall.

"He's young, he's strong, sometimes it's your moment and I think it's his moment," he said of Dubois.

"I know that if he catches Usyk, Usyk won't know what's hit him. Can he cope with that power?"

Around Sky