Promoter Frank Warren's appeal to the WBA regarding Daniel Dubois' loss to Oleksandr Usyk has added another layer of intrigue to the Unified Heavyweight Title bout that took place on August 26th, 2023, in Poland.
Dubois, the 26-year-old British heavyweight, delivered a fifth-round low shot to Usyk, the Ukrainian unified heavyweight champion. The referee promptly ruled the punch as a low blow. Following this decision and recovery time, Usyk recovered and ultimately stopped Dubois in the ninth round, retaining his titles.
The appeal centers around the low blow call, with Warren and his team contending that the punch was actually legal and should have resulted in an official knockdown. They have called for the fight's outcome to be ruled a no contest and for a rematch to be ordered.
The WBA has acknowledged the appeal, stating that any decision will be made in accordance with their rules and communicated appropriately.
The controversy surrounding the fight has divided some in the boxing community, with opinions on whether the punch was legal or not. Some, like legendary trainer Russ Anber, believe the punch was a low blow, while others argue it legal.
If the appeal is unsuccessful, Usyk's next steps in the heavyweight division remain uncertain. He could face Croatia's IBF mandatory challenger Filip Hrgovic or potentially engage in an undisputed bout against Britain's WBC champion Tyson Fury in early 2024. The final decision will depend on the outcome of the appeal and the WBA's ruling.