Boxing: David Haye sets date for Wladimir Klitschko fight
David Haye's world heavyweight title unification bout with Wladimir Klitschko will take place on July 2 in Hamburg.
The WBO champion finally agreed terms to meet IBF/WBO holder Klitschko last month on either June 25 or July 2 with several venues in contention.
Klitschko's manager Bernd Boente confirmed to Press Association Sport that the 57,000-capacity Imtech Arena in Germany would stage the blockbuster contest after other venues, including options in Switzerland and Ukraine, were considered.
While various European venues were considered, the fight was never going to be held in Britain for economical reasons.
Klitschko and his brother Vitali, the WBC champion, are huge draws in Germany despite being of Ukrainian nationality, while Switzerland would have held its own financial appeal.
Boente confirmed the negotiations and yesterday's final decision had been carried out with his opposite number Adam Booth, Haye's manager.
"The fight will be July 2 in Hamburg. It is confirmed 100%," Boente told Press Association Sport.
"We had different options and held negotiations in other countries. Switzerland was in play, Ukraine and different options in Germany.
"But it was always the case that Adam Booth and myself discussed all these things such as the different business options on the table, as partners, and then made the decision together yesterday that we'd go to Hamburg."
The fight will be held at the Imtech Arena, home of Bundesliga side Hamburg, which holds 57,000.
"I think the capacity will be something in that range because while we have more seats on the pitch, we are losing some seats because of the huge rigging, etc," Boente said.
Klitschko has been undergoing protracted rehabilitation from an abdominal injury suffered in December but Boente insists the slightly later date was unconnected.
"The date had nothing to do with Wladimir's stomach injury," he said. "The arena could not do the week before.
"We had only two dates from (broadcasters) Sky and RTL, the key players here, and it was either June 25 or July 2.
"So it was always dependent on the stadium. In Hamburg, only July 2 was possible because of various concerts. I think two weeks later Take That play the same arena."
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