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."



Voices
Barn owls are among species that could be affected
charity appeal
News
Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
Sport
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
cricketEoin Morgan reportedly to take over ODI captaincy
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
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

Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

£65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

£50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

£27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas