19 November 2007
David Haye writes exclusively for the ‘News’
Seventeen years in the making and it's all over now. I am the undisputed WBC and WBA cruiserweight champion of the world!
When the ring announcer said those words after the fight it was like a sweet symphony to my ears. I was repeating those words over and over again during the evening and on the Sunday. I'll probably keep repeating those words until it all sinks in. And the new undisputed WBC and WBA cruiserweight champion of the world…
The actual fight itself went exactly as I planned. Well, apart from the fourth round anyway. I knew his defence would be water-tight early doors and that I'd have to be patient in breaking him down. I saw Wayne Braithwaite just tee off on Mormeck in the first round of their 2005 fight and it didn't work one bit. He barely landed anything clean because Mormeck's defence was so good. After Braithwaite gassed, Mormeck rallied back and dominated him. I didn't want to make the same mistake.
I knew that if I invested in body shots I could reap the rewards later in the fight. Even though a lot of people were saying my only chance to win the fight was early, I knew that I could slow him down enough to catch him late. The body shots helped a great deal in doing this. I could see and hear him wince and double up every time I landed to the body. One left hook to the body I caught him with in the sixth round pretty much finished him off. It landed right inside - more like to the gut - and I watched him wilt after that.
I felt everything was in control, apart from that fourth round. That round was just me letting the French fans think Mormeck was getting on top a little. It was all for excitement purposes. I wanted to make the thing entertaining. It wouldn't have been such a great fight if I just knocked him out, would it? In all seriousness, though, Mormeck caught me with a left hook to the temple and my legs went. Temple shots are the worst shots to take as a boxer because of the damage it does to your equilibrium. Unfortunately, I know all there is to know about those shots.
Still, while I was taking a knee, I realised what it was all about. I thought to myself, this is it. This is the chance I'd been waiting my whole life for, and that it was never going to be easy. You can't buy undisputed world titles from your local newsagents. You've got to earn them. You've got to be head and shoulders above everyone in your weight class. You've got to be The Man. To become The Man, I had to rally back from being knocked down. That's exactly what I did.
As the rounds progressed I started to relax just as Mormeck seemed to be slowing down. My defence came together nicely in the sixth round, and the body shots were having a noticeable effect on Mormeck's workrate. In the sixth and seventh rounds I started hitting the spot - Mormeck's chin. In the five rounds before, it had been very difficult to land clean because his defence was so tight. However, once those body shots paid off and the feints opened him up a little, my Hayemakers started finding a home.
I know that once I land flush on somebody's chin they haven't got a hope in hell of remaining unaffected. Something will happen. Either they'll be knocked out cold or, at the very least, there legs will go a little. As soon as I landed clean on Mormeck's jaw I sensed the end was near. His workrate had dropped because of the body shots, and now I was finding holes in his defence. When the final blows landed and I realised Mormeck wasn't going to beat the count, the feeling was unbelievable. I still can't believe it now.
I am now one of three genuine world champions in Great Britain. I am the top fighter in my division just as Joe Calzaghe is the best super middleweight in the world and Ricky Hatton is the best light-welterweight in the world. Great Britain has never had this kind of situation before, where three of its top fighters undisputedly head their respective divisions.
The next step for me is the heavyweight division. Cruiserweight is just too difficult to make now, and, unless something appealing happens in the division - money-wise - I doubt I'll ever fight at 14 st 4 lbs (the cruiserweight limit) again. Once I get to heavyweight I'll just look to do exactly the same as I've done at cruiserweight. I won't cherry-pick opponents and aim for one of the tin pot world titles. I will work my way up the proper way and look to become undisputed world heavyweight champion.
Heavyweight glory won't be easy, but then becoming number one at cruiserweight wasn't easy, either. There will be sceptics saying I won't do anything at heavyweight, just as people were saying the same about me at cruiserweight after my first and only pro loss three years ago. Becoming The Man in any division is never easy. This is why a lot of fighters just settle for winning a title, as opposed to establishing themselves as number one. On Saturday night in Paris I established myself as the number one cruiserweight in the world.
And the new…
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