Daniel Dubois looks to put an exclamation point on a terrific 2019, entering his fifth fight of the year as he faces Japan's Kyotaro Fujimoto in a scheduled 12-round regional heavyweight title fight.
Both were within their relative weight range during Friday's ceremonial weigh-in. London's Dubois (13-0, 12KOs) tipped the scales at 240 pounds, while Japan’s Fujimoto checked in at 230.25 pounds for their headlining bout Saturday evening at Copper Box Arena in Hackney Wick, London, England.
Dubois has emerged as a heavyweight to watch, having gone 4-0 (4KOs) on the year, including a 5th round stoppage of Nathan Gorman in their battle of unbeaten prospects this past July in London. The win was followed up with a 1st round knockout of undefeated but untested Ebenezer Tetteh this past September.
Fujimoto (21-1, 10KOs) is tasked with the challenge of making the main event more than the intended showcase as is expected for the local favorite. The squat 33-year old has won 16 straight but steps well up in competition as he fights outside of his native Japan for the first time in his career.
The evening’s chief support has turned into a grudge match, with Liam Williams and Alantez Fox talking up a great game at each other’s expense throughout fight week heading into their 12-round middleweight clash.
Both came in just under the 160-pound limit. Williams (21-2-1, 16KOs) arrived at a shredded 159.25 pounds in looking to extend his five-fight win streak. Fox (26-1-1, 12KOs)—a 6’5” middleweight from Upper Marlboro, Maryland—weighed 159.5 pounds for his United Kingdom debut.
Williams has scored five straight knockouts, including a two-round drubbing of Karim Achour this past July on the same show as Dubois’ breakout win over Gorman. Fox has won three straight since his lone career defeat, a 12-round loss to unbeaten Demetrius Andrade who has since captured the World Boxing Organization (WBO) middleweight title.
Interestingly, this continues to carry advertisement as a final eliminator, despite the WBO twice dismissing that claim in the past three weeks, including Thursday as reported by BoxingScene.com. The sanctioning body has made available a regional title for the contest, as promised during its annual convention earlier this month in Tokyo where WBO president Francisco ‘Paco’ Valcárcel was emphatic in rejecting the claim of the bout being sanctioned as a title eliminator.
Also on the show:
- Manchester, England’s Tommy Fury (2-0, 1KO) weighed 179.7 pounds for his clash versus Poland’s Przemyslaw Binienda (2-26, 2KOs), who checked in at 179.7 pounds. Fury is from the famous fighting family which includes older brother Tyson (29-0-1, 20KOs), a currently unbeaten top-rated heavyweight. Binienda’s story carries considerably less sex appeal, as he looks to snap a 25-fight losing streak including an 0-8 UK tour thus far;
- Rising and locally based junior lightweight prospect Archie Sharp (17-0, 9KOs) checked in at a chiseled 129.2 pounds for a regional title defense versus Latvia’s Artjoms Ramlavs (11-0, 6KOs), who came in right at the 130-pound limit
- London-bred- unbeaten junior bantamweight contender Sunny Edwards (13-0, 4KOs) aims for his fourth win of 2019, weighing in at 114.6 pounds for his scheduled 12-round British title fight versus Liverpool’s Marcel Braithwaite (9-1, 0KOs), who weighed 114.5 pounds.
The show airs live on BT Sport in the United Kingdom and on ESPN+ in the United States, beginning 7:30pm local time and 2:30pm ET.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox