Dillian Whyte has acknowledged that he is preparing for “one of the biggest moments” of his life, as he readies himself to take on Tyson Fury at Wembley Stadium.
Whyte will look to take the WBC heavyweight title from his fellow Briton on Saturday night, with approximately 94,000 fans set to attend one of the biggest boxing events in recent memory.
Whyte, 34, refused to attend the first pre-fight press conference last month and skipped this Tuesday’s open workouts. He is expected to be present at the final pre-fight press conference on Wednesday but has expressed no regret for his approach to him so far, which has seen him focusing on training.
“It’s finally happening, so I’m trying to not think: ‘Oh, my God, it’s happening.’ I’m just preparing for it like any other fight,” the Jamaican-born Londoner told the BBC.
“This is one of the biggest moments of my life to be honest, and many times when people get into these positions, they start freaking out and panicking. I’m a warrior and I love fighting and I want to fight.
“I’m just trying to be easy, trying to be calm and just take it step by step. I’ve sort of been here – not on this magnitude, but I’ve had big fights before and I’ve been in positions where I’ve been the enemy before in big fights. So, I’ve gotten used to it.”
Whyte (28-2, 19 knockouts) last fought in March 2021, knocking out Alexander Povetkin to avenge his own stoppage loss to the Russian from August 2020. Whyte was then scheduled to face Otto Wallin late last year but withdrew due to injury.
That turn of events freed the Briton up to take on Fury, however.
“I’ve earned this position, I’ve earned it,” Whyte said. “I’ve been fighting for it for years. It should’ve happened two, three years ago.
“I’m not a journeyman. Tyson Fury says that it’s the Tyson Fury show; no, it’s not.
“I’m a top pay-per-view fighter, I’m one of the best fighters in England and in the world as well, so don’t try to treat me like I’m some nobody from nowhere. Do you know what I mean?
Whyte dismissed the suggestion that the unpredictable Fury could withdraw at the last moment, saying: “No, I’m not worried, because it’s his biggest payday to date. The tickets are selling because he’s fighting me.”
The challenger also offered a balanced appraisal of Fury, who is undefeated at 31-0-1 (22 KOs) and has stopped Deontay Wilder in his last two bouts.
“He’s the only one of our era that’s won all the titles,” Whyte said. “He’s a good fighter, he’s a top fighter, he’s an undefeated guy, he’s a big guy – but I don’t see him like everyone else sees him; everyone else sees him like he’s the white, 6’9” Muhammad Ali, [Mike] Tyson, Joe Frazier mix reborn.
“I don’t see him like that. I just see him as potential prey. I’m a very, very confrontational, kind of hostile character, so I’m not like these other guys. I’m a warrior and I come to fight, I come to leave it all on the line, I’m used to taking risks. Taking risks and chances is nothing to me.
“It’s boxing, one punch can change everything, but he hasn’t been through what I’ve been through, he hasn’t been to where I’ve been to, he hasn’t done what I’ve done.”