Chaotic scenes marred the weigh-in for Saturday’s heavyweight rematch between Dillian Whyte and Dereck Chisora after a scuffle broke out between the rival camps.
After two relatively calm days of build-up, the fuse was lit for the showdown at The O2 when a brawl erupted as the fighters and their entourages left the stage in north London.
Security and officials intervened and it ended with Chisora climbing back on to the dais and shouting “Come back. Right here you f****** suckers”.
Only five ounces separated the warring British rivals with Chisora scaling lighter at 17st 8lbs 3oz and looking in the best condition of his career, while Whyte, was almost a stone under the total for his previous outing against Joseph Parker in July.
After a lengthy stare down the London rivals exchanged words with Whyte doing most of the talking, while Chisora stood in boxer shorts saying “DILLIAN SUCK MY..”
Whyte views Chisora as a “madman” but is ready continue grinding his way to the heavyweight summit by dispatching the Harare-born 32-year-old.
A ferocious first meeting two years ago ended with Whyte snatching a disputed split decision and until Friday the build-up to their second clash lacked the previous fireworks that saw Chisora hurl a table at his opponent during a press conference.
But Whyte knows Chisora remains an unpredictable opponent who is blocking his own circuitous route to the top.
“Dereck is a madman. If he’s angry, you don’t know what he’s going to come with!” Whyte told Press Association Sport.
“I take nothing from our first fight. I was a relative novice and still beat him. And I’ve improved one hell of a lot since then.
“To say I’ve done it the hard way is an understatement. In boxing, no one has given me anything, no one has helped me. It’s been a grind, grind, grind.
“But boxing hasn’t made me hard. I’ve been through a lot worse. This is nothing to me. I’ve been a street kid since I was four years old.
“My life story is deep and dark, here’s been a lot of sadness and darkness. That’s what made me hard, not boxing. It helped prepare me for this. No complaints, we push forward and continue rising.”
In the hope of challenging for the world title once again, Chisora has teamed up with former foe David Haye by appointing his fellow Londoner as his manager.
Haye, who won their 2012 showdown by a fifth-round knockout, believes that Saturday’s eagerly-awaited clash will indicate whether Chisora is a genuine contender having finally mended his ways.
“Managing Dereck has been challenging to say the least because he’s not the easiest guy to deal with,” Haye said.
“But his mind is on it and he’s doing what should be done – going to bed early and not driving around in the early hours of the morning.
“Now he’s living like an athlete, which he hasn’t done in the past. You can see it in shape and mentality.
“On Saturday night will find out if he can become the Dereck Chisora he’s always should have been.”