British boxing has changed quite a bit over the years since the turn of the century.
Meanwhile, Prince Naseem Hamed and Amir Khan have given British Muslim boys something to dream about for the rest of their lives, while Scottish fans have Ricky Burns and Josh Taylor to thank for many a night to remember.
Here is GIVEMESPORT‘s list of the top ten greatest British boxers of the 21st century.
10. Amir Khan
Let’s face it, Khan by his own admission isn’t exactly who he once was, but once upon a time the Bolton boxer was widely considered the best of Britain.
An Olympic silver medallist, ‘King’ Khan paved the way for future generations of British stars to come.
The 35-year-old is also a former super-lightweight and welterweight world champion.
9. Anthony Joshua
It’s impossible not to put AJ somewhere on this list simply for the fact that the sport in general would not be where it is today without him.
Look, he might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I’d wager even your grandma knows who he is, and that’s saying something.
8. Carl Froch
But, in fairness, few others can lay claim to such an achievement.
His only two losses were against Mikkel Kessler and Andre Ward, but the Cobra bounced back with a win over the Great Dane in their rematch and proved to be the better fighter on the night.
7. Prince Naseem Hamed
Prince Naseem Hamed is a name synonymous with the city of Sheffield and is widely regarded as one of the greatest of all time.
His rapid rise to super stardom took place in 1995 when he beat Steve Robinson by TKO to become the WBO featherweight champion at Cardiff Arms Park.
‘Naz’ showed unparalleled skill time and time again against the likes of Jose Badillo, Vuyani Bungu and Wilfredo Vazquez.
6. Ricky Hatton
Your dad’s favourite fighter, probably.
Nicknamed ‘The Hitman’ in a nod to Tommy Hearns, Ricky Hatton took his army of fans with him wherever he went, from the streets of Manchester all the way to the strips of Las Vegas.
His true grit and determination saw him record 45 wins from 48 fights with 32 KO victories. Hatton’s granite chin held out for the best part of ten years until along came Floyd Mayweather.
5. David Haye
The faith cruiserweight Haye showed in trainer Adam Booth ended up paying dividends as he brushed aside the opposition until he got injured and dropped off after some humiliating defeats.
4. Josh Taylor
The Scottish warrior dropped Jose Ramirez twice en route to becoming Britain’s first four-belt undisputed champion which makes the BBC’s decision to snub him from the 2021 Sport Personality of the Year shortlist all the more baffling.
Taylor, 31, has defeated super-lightweights such as Ivan Baranchyk, Ohara Davies, Viktor Postol and Regis Prograis.
He’s currently scheduled to face Jack Catterall on February 26 in Glasgow.
3. Tyson Fury
Were it not for the man ranked above him, you could make a case for Fury being not just the best fighter of his generation, but also the most talented heavyweight these shores have ever produced.
Fury’s highly-anticipated rematch versus Deontay Wilder is the stuff of legend and when they clashed again last October, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum described it as ‘the greatest heavyweight fight of all time’.
2. Lennox Lewis
Lewis narrowly misses out on top spot despite being a three-time heavyweight world champion who is the last man to hold the undisputed title.
His overall professional record stands at 41-2-1 (32 KOs), with his only losses coming at the hands of Oliver McCall and Hasim Rahman.
Lewis retired in 2004 after a knockout win over Vitali Klitschko a year prior.
1. Joe Calzaghe
After some umming and ahing Welshman Joe Calzaghe is my No. 1.
It was a close-rung thing between Calzaghe and Lewis, but in the end Calzaghe got the nod, just like he always did during his unbeaten 15-year career.
Calzaghe is the longest-reigning super-middleweight world champion in history having held the WBO title for over ten years from 1997 to 2007 before moving up to light heavyweight.