Saturday, 13 November 2010

Pre-fight hype: Audley Harrison vs David Haye

Now, I really wasn't going to do this. Why? Because I'm a big fan of both. And the small fact that both times I have done this I have predicted the result correctly.

I haven't got much time to do this before XFactor followed by the fight so I will be rushing it.

When this fight was announced, many people questioned whether Harrison is worthy. Hate him? Think he's waste? One-sided affair? Doesn't deserve the world title shot? Forget all of that, this is the most intriguing and talked about heavyweight fight in years. Biggest domestic heavyweight fight in over 15 years. Sold out a few days after release, in line to draw big pay-per-view buys for Sky Sports.

I'm gonna breakdown the fighters as I see it...

David Haye's strengths

"Speed kills" is a common phrase, especially in boxing. Very rarely fails when you are extremely fast. Combine that with genuine one punch knock out power then surely that is the route to victory every single time. He also has good foot and upper body movement.

David Haye's weaknesses

Well, there have been question marks over both his chin and stamina. It wasn't counted but Monte Barrett knocked him down during Haye's debut fight at the weight. Stamina? He went 12 round distance with Valuev. But that doesn't mean anything to me. Valuev never put him under any real pressure to make him exert reasonable energy, nor did he do the thing heavyweights do to sap oppositions energy - hug 'em. He also hangs his left-hand low, preferring to sway, bob-and-weave. He's capable of it but still.

Another weakness or potential weakness is Haye's inexperience at fighting a genuine heavyweight or more to the point a massive and mobile heavyweight. Ruiz wasn't very big = knocked down 4 times (3 as a result of punches to the back of the head); Valuev rocked in the last round though.

Audley Harrison's strengths

Don't screw up your face like that. He won the Olympic gold. I know amateur game is completely different to pro's, Harrison does have ability. Remember the inspired performance he put in to knock out Danny Williams? Ok, so it's only Williams but that isn't the point. Finally, Audley/Fraudley/Ordinary has reached the position he has longed for. I remember Joe Calzaghe in a bunch of lacklustre fights until he battered (the average, much hyped) Jeff Lacy. Harrison could put in a performance tonight. If he actually works, he'll put up a fight. Can't rule out the left-cross. I think he has knocked out 3 of his last 4 opponents (2 in Prizefighter and Michael Sprott for European belt).

Audley Harrison's weaknesses

Quite frankly, he doesn't work hard enough. Doesn't throw enough punches, rarely holds the middle of the ring with just, doesn't hold it up with the jab, hardly uses the left cross (until recently). Former cabbie Martin Rogan beat Audley on points due to A-Force's lack of work ethic. I don't think his chin is that bad, but Haye's punch is that good.

In conclusion

I'm rooting for the upset. Just for the fun of it to be honest. My head is telling me Haye will catch him and end it, but there's that bit in me saying UPSET! It's too unpredictable for me. I'm actually sitting on the fence. Could be down to me being a fan of both. Probably because it can go either way. I'll say the upset

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