Warren Says There Will Be Big Fights Regularly In Saudi Arabia

December 24, 2023
4 months
Warren Says There Will Be Big Fights Regularly In Saudi Arabia

Frank Warren is confident that boxing fans will see more big fights in Saudi Arabia. 

The Day of Reckoning boxing card demonstrated that as Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder, and Dmitry Bivol appeared on it. Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk will also face off for the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world on February 17, 2024. Reports also stress that Wilder and Joshua have agreed on a two-fight deal, the first of which will occur on March 9, 2024. There is also talk of the Saudis wanting to create an undisputed cruiserweight clash between Bivol and Artur Beterbiev. That has left boxing fans with plenty to look forward to, as Warren expects more of the same. 

Warren On Boxing

“With the emergence of the Saudi market and their interest in events, it has become a destination [for boxing] and I believe next year and onwards you’re going to see on a regular basis big fights here. This (card on Saturday) is the biggest event I’ve been involved with as far as the amount of top fights in one card.

“It’s just going to get better and better and we kick off next year with the first unification fight (heavyweight) in the 21st century, four belts on the line with Tyson and Usyk. So that’s the commitment to boxing and it’s going to get bigger and bigger,” Warren said 

Those ambitions will depend on whether Saudi can continue to deliver the big purses that fighters require. A significant attraction to fight in Saudi has been their willingness to put up the money. The Fury-Usyk fight was agreed upon, with both boxers getting fixed purses without negotiating with the other side. This was vital since a fight for April had broken down. Usyk publicly accepted a 70-30 split, but it was not enough to get the bout over the line.

The differences over the rematch clause were not overcome. But that may now create an inflated perception of what some boxers think they are worth. It may also delay some fights, with fighters hoping they can get bigger purses. And yet, if it has the impact of bringing new faces to boxing, then that can only be a good thing. Wilder has indicated he has a multi-fight deal with the Saudis, showing the country is the home of big-time boxing. 

Warren On Saudi Arabia

“Anything is a possibility here. There’s a will to make it happen. There’s been talks, who knows. That may evolve into something. Not just the heavyweights but all of them fighting each other. It’s a massive opportunity for people. There’s just such interest in here being created and putting on groundbreaking events,” Warren stated 

Boxing has often been accused of not putting on the biggest fights. But the rise of Saudi boxing is changing that slowly. This may encourage other promoters to work together. Warren and Eddie Hearn, who have not been on the best terms, came together to deliver ‘The Day of Reckoning’ card. That can only be a good thing moving forward. 

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