Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Boxing [Print without images]

Monday, April 29, 2013
David Haye, Manuel Charr to fight

By Dan Rafael
ESPN.com

Former heavyweight titlist David Haye, who has been campaigning for a fight with heavyweight titlist Vitali Klitschko, finally realized that he was not going to get one any time soon, so on Monday he announced his next move, which does not include Klitschko.

Haye (26-2, 24 KOs), 32, of England, signed with top British promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Sport, which in turn announced that Haye will face former title challenger Manuel Charr on June 29 at the MEN Arena in Manchester, England.

Haye has his own promotional company, Hayemaker Promotions, which will be involved in the fights with Matchroom Sport as an event co-promoter.

"I'm delighted to have agreed to a four-fight promotional deal with David Haye and Hayemaker," Hearn said. "In my opinion David is the most exciting heavyweight on the planet and I'm over the moon to help bring his comeback fight against Charr to Sky Sports on June 29."

One of the reasons Haye went with Hearn is because Matchroom Sport has an exclusive deal to deliver boxing events to Sky, Great Britain's most prominent network that televises boxing. In other words, if Haye wants to be seen by the most viewers, he needed to be on Sky, which meant going with Hearn.

Haye, Charr and Hearn are scheduled to appear at a news conference on Wednesday in Manchester.

Haye, the former cruiserweight champion, won a heavyweight belt via majority decision against Russia's Nikolai Valuev in November 2009 and made two defenses, knockout wins against former titlist John Ruiz and British countryman Audley Harrison. But then Haye lost his title via lopsided decision to Wladimir Klitschko in July 2011, after which Haye blamed the loss on an injured pinkie toe.

Haye has only fought once since the loss to Klitschko, a fifth-round knockout of England's Dereck Chisora last July in a heavily hyped fight between bitter rivals.

Now Haye is taking on Charr (23-1, 13 KOs), 28, a native of Lebanon living in Germany. In his most significant fight, Charr challenged Vitali Klitschko for his world title last September in Moscow. Klitschko knocked him down in the second round and stopped him in the fourth round because of a bad cut over his right eye.

Since the loss to Klitschko, Charr has won two fights in a row, a first-round knockout of Konstantin Airich in December in Germany and a second-round stoppage of Yakup Saglam in February in Romania.

Charr campaigned to get the fight with Haye, even showing up at the press conference after he knocked out Chisora to ask him for the opportunity.

Last month, Charr continued his efforts, saying, "I heard that Haye is still looking for an opponent for his next fight. There's no need to look any further. I'm right here waiting. Haye himself said that Vitali Klitschko couldn't beat me -- [that] instead Vitali's doctor won the fight for him [by stopping the fight because of the cut]. I still want my rematch against Klitschko and Haye is my way to get there. Let's do an eliminator for Vitali. I'm ready when you are, David!"