DILLIAN WHYTE named Lennox Lewis as Britain’s greatest ever heavyweight, ahead of Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua.
Fury and Joshua are expected to fight this year, and possibly for all four belts making heavyweight history.
Dillian Whyte named Lennox Lewis as Britain’s greatest ever heavyweightCredit: Getty Images – Getty
Lennox Lewis with his heavyweight belts in 1999Credit: AP:Associated Press
Lewis, now 55, was the nation’s last undisputed champion, but never held the WBO title, not widely recognised at the time.
But Whyte, 32, pointed to the names beaten on the 1988 Olympic gold medallist’s record as why he is Britain’s best heavyweight of all time.
He told Sky Sports: “Lennox Lewis. Just the people he fought, the people he beat, and the fashion he beat them.
“He came back from his two defeats and won both the rematches, and how long he reigned. There was a period in time when no one could touch him.
“He was destroying dangerous guys. Destroying them in seconds.
“Just the way he fought, his fighting style and his aggression.
“He destroyed Andrew Golota, Michael Grant and Razor Ruddock; came from behind to beat Frank Bruno and Vitali Klitschko; beating Gary Mason, Oliver McCall, David Tua, Evander Holyfield, Mike Tyson, Shannon Briggs, Tommy Morrison and Zeljko Mavrovic. The list goes on and on.
“Look at the guys that he was beating.”
Joshua, 31, has traded words with Lewis online in the past, causing a rift between the pair.
Promoter Eddie Hearn claimed it was due to jealousy, following AJ’s quicker rise to superstardom.
But Whyte, also promoted by Hearn, hit back: “Of course Eddie is going to say that.
“He’s definitely going to say that AJ is, because he wasn’t involved in Lennox Lewis, he was involved in AJ.
“Obviously, he’s trying to make history with AJ, so you understand that and rightly so.
“That’s what you should be doing as a promoter.”
Anthony Joshua pictured with promoter Eddie HearnCredit: REUTERS
Tyson Fury is the WBC and Ring Magazine championCredit: Reuters
Whyte – beaten by Joshua as a novice pro in 2015 – is taking inspiration from Lewis ahead of his must-win rematch against Alexander Povetkin, 41.
He has even linked up with the ex-champion’s old trainer Harold ‘The Shadow’ Knight.
Lewis was famously upset and knocked out against Hasim Rahman and Oliver McCall, but he avenged defeat against both.
Whyte, who lost his WBC mandatory status in November following a shock KO to Povetkin, is hellbent on doing the same on March 27 in Gibraltar.
He said: “I’m p***ed off with myself.
“I shouldn’t have lost last time and I did, and now it’s more to prove to myself than anyone else that it was just a blip and I know what I’m capable of doing.
“Listen, I tried to fight Povetkin years ago. Years and years ago I tried to fight him.
“I believe I could have beat him then, and I believe I can beat him now.”