Boxing: Haye hit by late change

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The Independent Online

David Haye's first professional opponent, Valeri Semishkur, has pulled out of tomorrow's cruiserweight bout at Bethnal Green, east London.

The Russian dropped out due to a virus. Hull's Tony Booth has agreed to step in at short notice and should still prove a tough first opponent for the Londoner, who turned professional after withdrawing from the Commonwealth Games because of injury.

Booth shares the British record with Lennox Lewis for the most number of professional wins, with his record of 41 wins, 68 losses and eight draws. Haye, who has a lucrative contract with the BBC, said: "I have always said that I would fight credible opponents and Tony Booth fulfils that criteria."