Dillian Whyte will ‘play it safe’ in Alexander Povetkin rematch after knockout loss, says Derek Chisora

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<p>Alexander Povetkin (left) knocked out Dillian Whyte in their first clash</p> (Matchroom Boxing)

Alexander Povetkin (left) knocked out Dillian Whyte in their first clash

(Matchroom Boxing)

Derek Chisora has said he doubts whether Dillian Whyte will have the mentality required to stop Alexander Povetkin in the pair’s rematch this weekend, seven months after the heavyweights’ first meeting.

Whyte was in control of that bout, flooring the Russian twice before suffering a brutal knockout defeat early in the fifth round.

And Briton Chisora, whom Whyte outpointed in 2016 and knocked out in 2018, believes the manner in which his compatriot lost to Povetkin will play on the mind of the ‘Body Snatcher’ when the opponents go head-to-head again this Saturday.

“Dillian will be in a catch-22, because first of all he talks like he’s going to bring maximum violence,” Chisora told the Ringside Toe 2 Toe podcast.

“He will want to go violent on this guy and in the back of his mind he’ll remember the knockout, and then he’s going to try and play safe.

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“I see Dillian winning it, but how he wins it I don’t know yet.”

Chisora said, however, that Whyte may be able to overcome the mental hurdle, as Anthony Joshua did in his rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr.

“AJ got knocked out and guess what, after that he went to Saudi, boxed amazing, so it wasn’t like he’s got demons in his mind. No, it’s a fight game we’re in.”

Whyte and Povetkin will compete in Gibraltar this weekend, whereas their initial meeting took place in promoter Eddie Hearn’s garden at the Matchroom headquarters in Essex, in the United Kingdom.

The rematch was originally scheduled to go ahead in November 2020, but Povetkin was hospitalised with coronavirus, forcing a postponement of the contest.