Wembley Arena sees more heavyweight action on Saturday night as Dillian Whyte faces off against Jermaine Franklin.
Whyte, 35, hasn’t been in the ring since April, when he was knocked out by WBC World Heavyweight Champion Tyson Fury.
That loss marked the third of his 31-fight career, but a win against the lesser-known Franklin could be the motivation he needs to step up against the likes of Anthony Joshua and Deontay Wilder next year.
Here’s how the two fighters shape up coming into Saturday night’s clash.
Back to Basics For ‘The Body Snatcher’
Born in Jamaica but fighting out of Brixton, Whyte has already tasted defeat and knows the comeback road well.
On two previous occasions he’s hit the canvas and stayed there before the Fury loss. The first a devasting uppercut from Joshua after the pair met to settle their rivalry for the British title. The second from the same shot, but this time out of the blue when Russian Alexander Povetkin caught Whyte flush, having been knocked down twice in the previous round.
Whyte made amends several months later, finishing off the job in emphatic style to set up his world title shot against Fury.
It was always going to be a big ask against Fury. Whyte the smaller and lighter of the two, despite standing at 6’4” and weighing in at the higher end of the division, was never allowed to get into his rhythm by the illusive Fury.
Picking punches in his usual rangy style, the world champ managed to cut Whyte’s right eye in the fourth, before knocking him down and then out in the sixth round in front of a 94,000 strong crowd at Wembley Stadium.
Ready to get back on track, can The Body Snatcher demonstrate his standout power to claim his 29th win in his professional career?
Coming Through the Ranks
While Whyte is at the back end of his time as a heavyweight, his opponent is just building a name for himself.
Fighting out of Michigan, USA, Franklin has time on his side at the age of 29. Stepping in the ring for his pro debut back in 2015, in the seven years since he’s been unbeaten in all 21 contests, winning 14 of those by knockout.
On paper, a 21-fight unbeaten record looks to be tough ask for Whyte, but, in reality, the Briton is by far his biggest test to date, easily surpassing his highlight wins over Rydell Booker and Jerry Forrest, both in 2019.
Having never fought outside of his home nation, the challenge grows even greater for Franklin. But if he can pull it off and cause one of the great upsets in the modern heavyweight boxing era, will it be closed curtains on Whyte’s career?
The 12-round heavyweight clash headlines the show which starts at 6pm, with the main event ring walks expected at 10pm.
Also on the undercard is fellow heavyweight Fabio Wardley. With his all-British bout against Nathan Gormley looming this weekend, he got chatting to us in the latest episode of ‘After Hours’. Stay locked in for that dropping later today…
Not stopping there, we’ve got tonnes of behind-the-scenes content with our guy David Alorka over on @JDSports – get following so you don’t miss any exclusive content ahead of Saturday night!