By James Slater
Britain’s David Haye and Manuel Charr of Lebanon came face-to-face today in Manchester, at the press conference to officially announce their upcoming June 29th bout. There were the usual stare-downs and Haye’s trainer Adam Booth stepped between the two at one point. Haye spoke to members of the media, and “The Hayemaker” said he is expecting a real challenge from the man beaten only by Vitali Klitschko.
“He’s a genuine heavyweight,” Haye told Sky Sports when speaking of the 23-1(13) Charr. “He’s a guy with a lot of heart and he’ll fight until he’s dead. He’s a serious guy and people are excited about that. He’s going to be in my face and try and hurt me. Manchester Arena’s going to be buzzing.”
Haye, 26-2(24) and now 32-years-old said his plan is to beat Charr, then one other ranked contender, getting himself to the eventual position of number-one contender for the Klitschkos – “they can only duck me for so long,” he said.
Meanwhile, Haye spoke about 28-year-old Charr’s recent decapitated head stunt, the same one he pulled in enticing the Klitschkos to fight him.
“He’s been banging the drum and made some good pictures of himself holding my decapitated head – the same thing I did to the Klitschkos five years ago,” Haye told BBC Radio. “It’s quite funny to be on the other side of the fence. He’s been on Twitter every day, saying what he’s going to do, so here we go, be careful what you wish for.”
On the subject of an all-British showdown with the unbeaten Tyson Fury later this year, Haye said contact has been made with Fury’s management, but that Fury’s manager “told us he didn’t want to go down that route.”
It will be a shame if Haye-Fury is not made, as a more natural all-British heavyweight rumble has not been seen in quite a few years. It seems Haye and Fury are both chasing the Klitschkos and will go separate routes as they do so.