DERECK Chisora last night became only the third Africa-born fighter to hold a world heavyweight title after stopping American heavyweight Malik Scott in the sixth round at London’s Wembley Arena.
The controversial British heavyweight KO’d Scott to claim the vacant World Boxing Organisation International heavyweight title.
With the win, Chisora – whom we at The Peoples’ Hub are proud to have worked with in the past – only becomes the third African boxer to strap a world title around his waist. He follows two other luminaries in the form of the late Corrie Sanders (South Africa) and Nigeria’s Samuel Peter, who both briefly held WBO and WBC titles respectively.
The Zimbabwe-born Chisora also eclipses the achievements of his hero, Proud “Kilimanjaro” Chinembiri who was only one heavyweight match away from the title shot. (In February 1990, Kilimanjaro, was prevented from competing in a bout against a young Lennox Lewis at Crystal Palace because he refused to give details of an Aids test to the British Boxing Board of Control.) Interestingly, like the legendary “Kilimanjaro”, Chisora also hails from the tough ghetto of Mbare in Harare.
Saturday night’s fight was a career-changing fight for “Dellboy”, as Chisora is known to his fans. He had lost four of his last six contests and needed to win this one to retain any hopes of making a title shot.
Landing a powerful overhand right to Scott’s head with the American trapped against the ropes, Chisora watched as his opponent was counted out after hitting the floor and lost his undefeated record when referee Phil Edwards waved the fight off despite him returning to his feet.
This was 32-year-old Scott’s first loss in his 37th fight, and marks the opportunity for Frank Warren, Chisora’s promoter, to look to match him towards world title contention again.
“It was the most nervous I have been before a fight, because I just couldn’t afford to lose,” admitted Chisora afterwards, having been on a strict dietary regime and still undergoing anger management classes.
Chisora has in the past been fined, suspended and reprimanded by the Boxing Board of Control, but a clip round the ear and a dressing down from his mother Violet has led to a dramatic new dietary regime and anger management classes.
He revealed earlier in the week, that the verbal tongue-lash he had received from his mum had put him on the straight and narrow.
He said, “You know when your mother is always in your ears ? One day she’d had enough and she said ‘why can’t you just listen to me for once in your life?’
“I thought I’ll do it for six months and if it doesn’t work out I’ll do it my own way. So it was my mother who made me change, she said I needed to start listening to people,” Dellboy explained.
He has now set his sights on a rematch with WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko, though a fight with Britain’s David Price could be more likely with both boxers aiming to get their careers back on track.
Words by: @makiwahenry