Dereck Chisora is considering a mixed martial arts fight

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By Sports Reporter

ZIMBABWE-BORN heavyweight boxer Dereck Chisora is considering a mixed martial arts fight in July while he waits a date for his heavyweight fight with Oleksandr Usyk.

The London-based British heavyweight was due to face former undisputed world cruiserweight champion Usyk this month, but the bout was postponed from May 23 due to restrictions put in place to stop the spread of coronavirus.

The 36-year-old boxer, who moved to London in his childhood, says no opponent has been fixed for his MMA debut with the American mixed martial arts promotion company Bellator.

Chisora told ESPN: “If the date doesn’t come up for Usyk I think I will be doing Bellator in July while I wait. I’m going in the Octagon and we are talking to them [Bellator] at the minute and it might happen in July in the UK.

“I’ve been [MMA] training for two and half years at London Shootfighters in Wembley with Alex Demetriades. I can do the MMA while I wait for the Usyk fight. It will be doing both at the same time.”

Chisora is not keen on fighting behind closed doors on a show without fans, which is what promoters are planning to do once boxing resumes in the UK in July after the sport was being shut down in March due to the global pandemic.

Chisora, who lost on points to Vitali Klitschko in a 2012 shot at the WBC world title, last boxed in October and will face a longer wait to fight Usyk (17-0, 13 KOs) if he wants the event to be held in front of fans.

“Fighting behind closed doors is like going back to be an amateur, or your early days as a professional,” Chisora said.

“Up and coming fighters can do it but for your bigger guys like Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury and me, I don’t think we can do that. You need fans to lift yourself up and I think this fight [against Usyk] needs fans. It will be in front of fans.”

Chisora is not the only British heavyweight considering a switch in fight codes.

While on lockdown, Chisora has been working on selling personalised face masks, similar to those he wears on the ring, to raise money for the Royal Free Charity which is supporting hospitals in north London during coronavirus.