The temper trap
Has Audley Harrison wound David Haye up to the point where the red mist won't clear? The Panel discuss...
Last Updated: 29/10/10 9:06pm
Best of Enemies brings two friends-turned-foes together for an all-British world-title affair.
When David Haye and Audley Harrison meet on November 13, live on Sky Box Office HD and in 3D, there will be much more at stake than the WBA heavyweight crown.
It is a fight that has captured the public's imagination already and our expert Panel are no different.
Over the next two weeks, Jim Watt, Johnny Nelson, Glenn McCrory and Nicky Piper will discuss the major issues surrounding the fight, before delivering their final verdicts...
You've all been following the war of words - is it fair to say Audley has won the early rounds? Is there a danger David will try too hard to, as he says, knock his block off, as a result?
JOHNNY: Whenever Audley says something, you can see a little wry smile on his face because he knows each time David has bitten. He's got to be loving it. He's doing everything he can to get under his skin. I did the same with Carl Thompson all those years ago; anyone with any commonsense would know it was a load of rubbish, but you know what? I got to him.
GLENN: David's normally a very cool customer, but I am sure he doesn't feel that Audley deserves this chance. I don't think this is a fight he actually thought he'd ever be in and I think that is annoying him as much as anything.
JIM: Whether or not Audley deserves a crack at a world title doesn't matter. He won the European title against Michael Sprott in a fight he was losing, but turned it round in dramatic fashion - so that shows you the level he's got to. He is a genuine threat.
NICKY: I'm with Glenn. I get the feeling David is genuinely rattled. It looks to me as if he is a little more nervous; he's boxing a man from his own country, he's the one under real pressure because if he loses his pride will be badly shaken. Lose this and he loses all face. This is a real pressure fight for him, real pressure - and I think that shows in some of the things he has said.
GLENN: This is a guy he used to look up to and now he's bad-mouthing him, saying he's going to knock him out - and it means he has to think a different way. He obviously doesn't like him and I think it is getting to him
JIM: I'm not so sure he is that bothered by it. I think the one thing with all this talk is for the first time, David is in against someone who is giving as good as he gets. Normally he's the one rubbishing the other guy, but this time it is coming back the other way. That is something he is not used to, so it's a different situation and I think that has been the hardest thing for him to deal with. Not necessarily what Audley's been saying, but just the fact he's been saying it.
JOHNNY: When David came into the Ringside studio recently, I said to him: 'You need to be careful' because it's human nature, when you're angry, to start swearing and spluttering, saying and doing things you end up regretting. That's because you can't think straight - and that is the last thing he needs, because if David isn't thinking straight he makes mistakes. His nature is one of reckless abandonment in the ring and that is dangerous anyway.
GLENN: David has always been a good pro, an excellent pro in fact and his mind is always on the job once that bell sounds. But I think he might have a problem here with all this bitterness and animosity that's building up - and we're still two weeks away from the fight. There's a long way to go but here and now, you've got to wonder whether that red mist will have cleared by November 13.
JIM: I don't think it will be an issue. It's in David's nature to go for a quick knockout anyway - he likes knocking people out - but I don't imagine he'd do anything silly. I don't think he'll be taking all this chat seriously; it's just two guys enjoying the limelight and doing what's expected of them. There is genuine needle there, but I don't think either is stupid enough to go jumping in just because they're angry.
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