What next for Dillian Whyte after his points victory over Joseph Parker?
It didn’t matter that there were no belts up for grabs at The 02; the Body Snatcher’s latest scalp has done his reputation in the heavyweight division the world of good.
Whyte has now won his last eight fights, but the only disappointment might be that he has propelled himself into contention for a title shot at a difficult time.
Tyson Fury has announced he is in talks to face Deontay Wilder, while Anthony Joshua will meet the WBA’s mandatory challenger Alexander Povetkin in September before potentially turning his attention to the Bronze Bomber in 2019.
What matters, ultimately, is that Whyte is now being talked about seriously in that discussion as he looks to avenge his 2015 knockout against Joshua.
Even though the 30-year-old was dropped by Parker in the final round, his stock has gone up considerably and it has emerged he had to dig even deeper than was first realised.
Speaking to the Off the Ball podcast, he explained:
“I had a broken hand going into the fight and it’s still a bit sore but I’m alright.
“I broke it three weeks out and then the same week in sparring my rib got done as well so… I broke my left hand, two knuckles on it.
“My left hook is one of my biggest punches. I hit him with the first jab in the first round and I felt the gloves filling up.
“He hit me in the first round, I think it was a left hook to the body, in the same spot where the ribs fractured and I thought ‘oh my god, here we go’.
“I just thought ‘let’s have a war, there’s no point trying to box this guy. Every time he hits me and it hurts, I’m going to hit him back as hard as I can and try and hurt him.’”
Whyte was struggling physically
Whyte’s camp did well to keep the injuries under wraps when they could well have plunged the fight into doubt.
Yet, it goes some way towards explaining some of his more tentative movements in the early rounds.
There’s no doubt he and Parker put on a thrilling bout, but maybe Whyte’s triumph would have been more comprehensive had he been fully fit.
The Brixton-based fighter has now set his sights on Manuel Charr once he has fully recovered.
Do you think Whyte should be given another shot vs AJ? Have your say in the comments.