American professional boxer Shannon Briggs has threatened to sue David Haye for going back on his word to fight him.
Briggs claims they had a contract that was signed in recent weeks, but Haye had a change of mind and avoided the opportunity to go head-to-head with him.
Instead, Haye has chosen Tony Bellew as the worthy opponent following months of trash talk and call outs ahead of the official announcement.
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It was Bellew’s promoter Eddie Hearn who confirmed the bout via Twitter, which is now scheduled to take place at the O2 Arena in London on March 4.
This will be the biggest fight for Haye since he made his comeback earlier this year as both boxers are ready to let actions speak rather than words.
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However, Briggs asserts he was the ultimate challenger to the former WBA Champion, having fought on Haye’s undercard this year.
As reported by Daily Mirror, the 44-year-old took to social media, denouncing the snub and called ‘the Hayemaker’ a coward in the public platform for shying away.
In his Instagram post, he wrote: “He [Haye] secretly went behind Frank Warren’s back and signed the fight to avoid fighting me.”
A 20-year old veteran of the sport, Briggs laments the lost opportunity for a shot at the heavyweight title and branded Haye ‘a disgrace to Great Britain’.
He added: “To turn down a heavyweight title shot is a slap in the face to boxing itself. We work our entire lives to reach the highest place in the sport. The title.
“I’ll be suing him for what he did. Yes I have a contract from him but I laid low to let it play out.
“You’ll be paying me for wasting my time and walking away from millions of dollars. All because you scared.”
Haye and Bellew already have a bitter history that escalated to another level when the WBC Cruiserweight Champion made an open challenge to the 36-year-old who was at ringside during the fight against BJ Flores last month.
Bellew will not have his cruiserweight title on the line as he makes the step up to the heavyweight division which was labelled by his compatriot “like a chihuahua fighting a pitbull.”
But, Tony ‘Bomber’ Bellew retaliated by saying: “I am the biggest fight you’ve had since Wladimir Klitschko and you didn’t fight him, you danced around him.
“You’re a joke, a clown. The sooner I take you out of boxing and get rid of you, the better.”