Dubois targets Fury and Joshua… after he's taken care of Bryan

Bring on Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua! British heavyweight star Daniel Dubois insists he has recovered from his traumatic defeat by Joe Joyce and wants a shot at the main men… after he’s taken care of trash-talking Trevor Bryan in America

  • Daniel Dubois challenges undefeated American Trevor Bryan on Saturday night
  • The Londoner, 24, has exorcised the demons of his retirement 18 months ago
  • He hopes the major players like Tyson Fury will be watching on Saturday night 

Daniel Dubois has exorcised the demons of his retirement against Joe Joyce with a broken eye-socket as he sets out to rebuff those who vilified him for taking a knee one dark London night 18 months ago.

That Dynamite Daniel should seek redemption in an unexpected chance to win a version of the world heavyweight championship is a testament to his rebuilt confidence, as well as the negotiating skills of his promoter Frank Warren.

This 24-year-old Londoner with the knockout punch challenges undefeated American Trevor Bryan for the WBA ‘regular’ title.

Daniel Dubois challenges undefeated Trevor Bryan for the WBA ‘regular’ title on Saturday

Victory would propel him within foreseeable distance of a mega-rich fight against whoever of Oleksandr Usyk, Anthony Joshua or Tyson Fury emerges as the first undisputed world heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis.

After two pushover fights lasting a total of just five minutes and 41 seconds Dubois proclaims himself ‘a new man’. Of the traumatic fractures of his orbital bone which specialists told him might have ended his career had he not pulled out while ahead on points in the 10th of 12 scheduled rounds against Joyce, he insists: ‘Psychologically I have no problems.

‘In the last two fights and through all the months of sparring against big punchers there has been no reaction.

‘So I have no worries at all about the eye. I’m fine physically and mentally. In fact I’ve learned a lesson from my only setback. Not about whether I should have risked carrying on against Joe but about dealing with adversity. I know I will be absolutely fine in the ring.’

The Londoner has exorcised the demons of his retirement against Joe Joyce 18 months ago

Bryan added his loud voice to the chorus of critics who have labelled Dubois ‘a quitter’.

This week the 32-year-old New Yorker now based in Florida ramped up the insults but the Greenwich-born prodigy simply smiled and said: ‘I don’t go in for trash talk. We English are too reserved and polite to be good at that stuff.

‘We take afternoon tea, then go out to take care of business. As it happens this is not in character with Bryan from what I’ve seen of him and it tells me he’s scared of my power. I hope he doesn’t lie down the first time I hit him hard. I want this to be a statement fight for me. For everyone at home and abroad to see that I’m back.’

Unusually this fight is due to start around Saturday tea-time, in Florida, so the UK can tune in live to a US event before going to bed.

Dubois hopes the major players in the heavyweight division will be watching. He says: ‘A win here will boost my image here in America. The belt will also raise the possibility of rich fights against Joshua, Fury and Usyk.

The 24-year-old has his sights set on Oleksandr Usyk, Anthony Joshua or Tyson Fury

‘While Usyk may be easier for me to beat with my size and hitting power, I hope AJ wins his rematch. He has been great for British boxing. I’ve always wanted to fight him and there is more chance of that happening if he beats Usyk and stays in the game. Yes, AJ is a big-money fight but I want to get to him and Tyson before they get to the age when they definitely call it a day. They are 10 years older than me so the reality is they might be done and dusted if I don’t fight them soon.’

Dubois would be willing to meet Dillian Whyte, Fury’s most recent victim, so as to step up the pressure on the heaviest guns which will come with mandatory title challenger ranking if he wins this WBA belt.

While Dubois gets back to serious business, Bryan’s legendary promoter Don King is giving back-handed compliments to Warren, ‘a man I still love even though he’s manoeuvred his boy Daniel in through the side door by making Trevor take this fight’.

Dubois hopes the major players like Tyson Fury will be watching on Saturday night

At 90, King is promoting the latest of more than 500 world title fights as he celebrates his 50th anniversary of coming out of prison and talking Muhammad Ali into a hospital charity fight, followed by The Greatest’s fabled Rumble In The Jungle with George Foreman.

The odds are heavily on Dubois to knock out Bryan at the 6,200-seat Casino Miami Jai-Alai Arena, which nestles below the flight path. Says Dynamite Daniel: ‘Trust me. I’ll be taking that belt home on one of those planes.’

Dubois weighed over a stone lighter at 17stone 26lbs against the American’s 18stone 54lbs.

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