Boxing: Lennox Lewis defends David Haye remarks

Lennox Lewis has defended David Haye's actions in the build-up to tomorrow's fight with Wladimir Klitschko and insists the Londoner has not over-stepped the mark with his trash-talking.

WBA heavyweight champion Haye has been criticised in some quarters for his distasteful goading of IBF/WBO champion Klitschko ahead of their clash at Hamburg's Imtech Arena.



Haye's stunts have ranged from wearing T-shirts depicting him holding the severed heads of Klitschko and his brother Vitali to iPhone games where players attempt to punch the head off an eastern European 'giant'. He has regularly made comments about inflicting serious injury on his rival and this week promised a "brutal execution".



Former undisputed heavyweight champion Lewis, who was riled by Mike Tyson's infamous rant about eating his children before their 2002 fight, does not think his fellow Briton has crossed the line.



"I haven't seen him really take it too far yet," he told Press Association Sport. "Everybody has got their level where they draw the line.



"If you asked 100 mothers out there they would say he took it too far but if you asked the normal punter out there they'd say 'that's great - did you see that?'.



"So everybody has their level of what is too far. If David said something about his family or something then yes, that would be taking it too far.



"But stuff like 'I'm going to take off your head' is just boxing talk.



"Anything about your family or anything like that is way too far."



Lewis has warned Haye he must knock Klitschko out because there is "no way" the judges will award him a points win in Germany.



Germany has a reputation for questionable judging decisions and Lewis was ringside in Cologne last Saturday to watch Birmingham's Matthew Macklin lose his WBA middleweight title challenge in a highly controversial split decision.



Haye has vowed to knock Klitschko out rather than let the fight go 12 rounds anyway and former undisputed champion Lewis says he has no other option.



"He's got to knock him out," Lewis said.



"When you go into the other guy's backyard you cannot hope to win on points.



"I don't see him winning on points. There is no way. It's such a big uphill battle.



"I commentated on Matthew Macklin against Felix Sturm in Cologne and it was disgraceful. It was so bad.



"Sturm's demeanour was like he was saying to Macklin 'what are you doing, you're not going to win anyway!'.



"As soon as that happened I thought about David and said 'dude, you're coming over to fight in the other guy's backyard? They're not going to give it to you. They are not going to be nice to you. Don't think you're going to get a fair shake. You know what you're going to have to go on there and do. Simple as that. Bring your own judges - your fists!'



"He has the talent to do it.



"He has to use his speed. If David is 100% he should win."



Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + uncapped commission : SThree: Hello! I know most ...

Recruitment Genius: Graduate Web Performance Consultant Trainee

£22000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Consultant trainee opportunit...

Ashdown Group: Marketing Executive - (Full marketing mix) - Knutsford

£22000 - £25000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Executive - Knu...

Ashdown Group: Web Developer - ASP.NET, C#, MVC - London

£45000 - £55000 per annum + Excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Web Developer -...

Day In a Page

Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss
Tony Blair joins a strange and exclusive club of political leaders whose careers have been blighted by the Middle East

Blair has joined a strange and exclusive club

A new tomb has just gone up in the Middle East's graveyard of US and British political reputations, says Patrick Cockburn
Election 2015: Meet the top 12 wacky candidates seeking your vote in May

Election 2015

Meet the top 12 wacky candidates seeking your vote in May
Countdown to the election: Operation Save Danny Alexander shifts into high gear as the SNP target his Commons seat

Operation Save Danny Alexander shifts into high gear

The Chief Secretary to the Treasury didn’t forget his Highland roots in the Budget. But the SNP is after his Commons seat
The US economy is under threat because of its neglected infrastructure

The US is getting frayed at the edges

Public spending on infrastructure is only half of Europe’s, and some say the nation’s very prosperity is threatened, says Rupert Cornwell
Mad Men final episodes: Museum exhibition just part of the hoopla greeting end of 1960s-set TV hit

New Yorkers raise a glass to Mad Men

A museum exhibition is just part of the hoopla greeting the final run of the 1960s-set TV hit
Land speed record: British-built hybrid rocket car aims to be the fastest on Earth

British-built hybrid rocket car aims to be the fastest on Earth

Bloodhound SSC will attempt to set a new standard in South Africa's Kalahari desert
Housebuilders go back to basics by using traditional methods and materials

Housebuilders go back to basics - throwing mud at the wall until it sticks

Traditional materials are ticking all the construction boxes: they are cheap, green – and anyone can use them
Daniel Brühl: 'When you have success abroad, you become a traitor. Envy is very German'

Daniel Brühl: 'Envy is very German'

He's got stick for his golden acting career and for his beloved restaurant - but Daniel Brühl is staying put in Berlin (where at least the grannies love him)
How Leica transformed photography for ever: Celebrating 100 years of the famous camera

Celebrating 100 years of Leica

A new book reveals how this elegant, lightweight box of tricks would transform the way we saw life on the street and in fashion, on the battlefield and across the world