All or nothing for Whyte
Dillian Whyte rematches against Alexander Povetkin tonight with his career stuck between the Rock of Gibraltar and a hard place.
Whyte’s dream world title shot remains agonisingly out of reach, even though he was first named as the WBC’s No 1 heavyweight challenger four years ago.
His spectacular KO loss to Povetkin in August cost him the interim title and he has slipped to sixth in the WBC’s ranking of challengers.
Whyte, 32, admits his career is on the line in the Rumble on the Rock and a second defeat could KO his world title hopes.
Yet if Whyte wins he will still be at least a year away from a shot and the four main heavyweight belts are tied up because of Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury’s two fights.
He would also not automatically become the WBC’s mandatory challenger and having clocked up over 1,000 days as their No 1 contender, he is frustrated at being overlooked.
“The mandatory position is on hold at the minute, but the winner of this fight should be in the mandatory position, and in line for a title fight next,” he said. “Hopefully I won’t have to wait 1,000 days again.
“I should be right back where I was, the No 3 heavyweight in the world, and I should get my title shot this time, so let’s see.
“Boxing is a strange sport, you can be mandatory, you can be No 1, pay all your sanctioning fees and still not get a shot because if you’re dangerous, guys will avoid you.
“I’m in the kind of guy who can throw a spanner in the works so that the big fights don’t happen. It’s difficult and it is what it is.”
Whyte has been his usual laidback self this week and he has enjoyed the facilities on the five-star yacht hotel, the Sunborn Gibraltar.
He dismissed any suggestion he is mentally scarred by his shattering loss last time out when Povetkin turned the fight in an instant with a thunderous left uppercut.
Whyte says his tough upbringing in Jamaica and Brixton means h can handle anything and he is adamant he will have his revenge tonight.
“Listen man, with what I’ve been through in life, a knock-out in this sport is nothing,” he said.
“I’ve gone through many things in my life and suffered as a child, so this is nothing. It’s one knockout. I’ve had two losses in 29 fights.
“I’m not one of those guys who needs time to process stuff mentally and worry about it. I don’t need to spend two weeks thinking about the defeat and another two weeks getting ready, psychologically ready. I lost, we regroup and we go again.
“That’s my mindset, I’ve always been a warrior. I was forced to be a warrior from an early age, I was forced to learn how to survive.
“For me, I shouldn’t be where I am now because I’ve had no amateur grounding, no top promoters behind me for a long time. I’ve come up swimming against the tide. We readjust, we go again and I will get my revenge.”