DAVID Haye and Wladimir Klitschko may have all the eyes in the boxing world focused on their heavyweight unification showdown.
But less than 24 hours after their bitter world championship battle is fought out in front of a capacity 55,000 in Hamburg’s Imtech Arena, a local affair will command the attentions of the North-East fighting public.
Hartlepool-trained David Dolan will take on Jon Lewis Dickinson in the open air at a football venue – Sunderland’s Stadium of Light.
It will be played out in front of a fraction of the crowd and while it won’t be lacking raw passion, their battle for the vacant Northern Area cruiserweight championship has not been ruined by any bad blood.
Unlike, Haye v Klitschko there has not been a whiff of any public animosity between Dolan and Dickinson.
Neither gladiator has been forced to enter into any gamesmanship or outrageous comments to “sell the fight”.
“I think there’s going to be a lot of interest in this,” said Dolan, the former West rugby forward, who while Sunderland born and bred hones his boxing skills at trainer Neil Fannan’s Brierton gym.
“It’s a derby and I think we’ll both be well supported and it should be a great atmosphere at the Stadium of Light.
“He’s a good boxer as am I, so I’m expecting a good contest which the fans will like.
“It’s a bit of a unique event, taking place outside in a great arena.
“I’ve boxed outside before in Sardinia although it’s a bit of a different climate to Sunderland!
“When I came to the show here before it was pretty well covered in so if the worst came to the worst and it rained then it’s all pretty much covered in.
“But the forecast is supposed to be good for the weekend.”
Full story in Thursday’s Mail