With England continuing to set the European Championships alight, it seems as though the entire country is expectantly waiting for the Three Lions to bring football home.
With this in mind, it’s easy to forget that we have some intriguing boxing contests scheduled in the coming weeks, from the third fight between Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder to Manny Pacquiao’s clash with pound-for-pound king Errol Spence Jr at welterweight.
You can wager on these duels at the best boxing betting sites in the UK, of course, but here’s a preview of the top three fights scheduled in June.
1. Tyson Fury v Deontay Wilder, July 24th (Reschedule for October)
Let’s start with the most fascinating fight on our list; as current WBC king and ‘linear’ world champion Tyson Fury (30-0-1) does battle with the vanquished Deontay Wilder (42-1-1) for a third time in Las Vegas on July 24th.
Fury is the overwhelming favourite with the bookmakers, of course, having dismantled Wilder with relentless pressure and heavy body shots in a seven-round beating in February.
What’s more, many thought he won the first, drawn encounter between the pair in December 2018, albeit with a more cautious, backfoot display that saw Fury’s dominance undermined by two late Wilder knockdowns.
However, Wilder’s new trainer Malik Scott has warned that his charge will try something different this time out, rather than simply stalking his opponent and looking to unload his deadly right hand. This suggests that Wilder may leverage his amateur roots and go back to basics this time around, utilising his jab and throwing more combinations as a way of giving his right hand a better chance of landing.
Still, he’ll have to find a way to fight more effectively off the back foot too, especially as Fury pressured him relentlessly in the second fight.
The gypsy king has also beaten his foe comprehensively while fighting with two distinct styles, so it’s hard to see a scenario where Wilder wins without significant improvement and an adjustable gameplan.
However, Wilder retains a puncher’s chance at the very least, particularly as his powerful right hand has already downed Fury twice in the past.
2. Jermell Charlo v Brian Castano, July 17th
‘Iron Man’ Jermell Charlo (34-1) is now considered the main man in the light-middleweight division, having retained his WBC titles with a TKO of Tony Harrison in 2019 and subsequently claimed two more belts with a superb knockout of Jeison Rosario last September.
He also picked up the vacant Ring magazine title in the process, and was due to fight WBO champion Patrick Teixeira to unify the championship in 2021.
However, Teixerira was stunned by mandatory challenger Brian Castano (17-0-1) in February of this year, with the latter winning by a unanimous decision and pledging to fight Charlo next.
The fight was duly signed on April 15th, with both fighters looking to make history by becoming the first ever undisputed champion in the 154lbs weight class. Set for the AT&T Centre in San Antonio, Texas, Charlo enters as the odds-on favourite with most bookies, despite the fact that his opponent remains unbeaten.
Castano is also a relentless pressure fighter who has knocked out 12 of his 17 victims, making him a dangerous proposition for a man who also likes to plough forward and do damage to his opponents.
In truth, this is a much closer fight than the odds suggest, and we wouldn’t be surprised if Castano walked away with another surprising win here.
3. Joe Joyce v Carlos Takam, July 24th
Despite taking place on the same date as Fury v Wilder, this fight at the SSE Arena in Wembley, London has definitely caught the imagination of British fans.
Here, Joe Joyce (12-0) will take on the tough-as-teak Carlos Takam (39-5-1), with the former looking to build on his systematic demolition of Daniel Dubois in November and push forward his claims for a world title bout.
This will certainly provide a fascinating clash in styles, with the measured, almost metronomic jab of Joyce pitted directly against Takam’s brute force and all-action style.
Joyce’s jab alone did untold damage to Dubois during their 2020 encounter, for example, while Takam’s see-saw clash with Derek Chisora in July, 2018 showcased the best and worst of the French Cameroonian as he dominated for long periods before being brutally knocked out in round eight.
The question that remains is whether the superior boxing skills of Joyce will keep Takam at bay, or if the latter’s strength and punching power are ultimately too much for the Englishman.
Incredibly, some bookies have Joyce as short as 1/12 to win, perhaps in the belief that Takam is slightly past his best. However, he has traded blows with some of the best in the business, while his four defeats since 2009 have all come against elite-level fighters (namely Alexander Povetkin, Joseph Parker, Anthony Joshua and Chisora).
On 15 June 2018, it was confirmed that Takam would face Derek Chisora on 28 July at The O2 Arena, London, England, on the undercard of Dillian Whyte vs. Joseph Parker. Chisora knocked out Takam in the 8th round in an exciting battle, although Takam had dominated the early rounds and was ahead on the judges' scorecards when he was knocked out.