Daniel Dubois has thanked his fans and fired back at ‘doubters’ after his defeat to Joe Joyce on Saturday night and the accusations of ‘quitting’ that followed.
Dubois was the favourite going into the contest against his fellow Londoner but struggled to impose himself on Joyce, although it was an evenly matched contest throughout.
The 23-year-old’s left eye began to swell midway through the bout and by the 10th it was swollen shut.
A well-placed jab to the damaged eye from Joyce was enough to see Dubois take a knee and watch the referee count him out, ending his previously unbeaten record in the process.
It has since transpired that Dynamite suffered a broken orbital bone and nerve damage around the eye, making the ending to the fight understandable, but that has not ended the accusations that he quit.
Dubois is undeterred by anything that happened on Saturday night or has been said since, and has vowed to return and continue to rise up the heavyweight ranks.
‘Thank you to everyone who has sent messages of support over the weekend. All my respect to @joejoyceboxing, he boxed well and won fair and square,’ Dubois wrote on social media.
‘I thought I was winning the fight. I tried to fight through the injury but I couldn’t in the end. I’m out of hospital and will wait now for the fracture to heal.
‘I’ll be back to prove my doubters wrong and my fans right.’
Anthony Joshua’s promoter, Eddie Hearn, believes Dubois did show weakness in the fight, despite suffering the grim injury.
‘I thought it was a strange one, wasn’t it,’ Hearn said on Instagram. ‘I think it was about the fourth or fifth round I thought, “He don’t fancy this.” He went to the corner and the corner team were saying things like, “Come on! This is the fight game!”
‘I thought, “Calm down, it’s only the fourth round.” And I think they just knew he was mentally weak. I’m not sure.
‘I always feel like it is difficult for a non-fighter to say to a fighter he quit. I think you have to look at what the fighters are saying. Every fighter says Dubois quit. So I guess, in boxing terms, yes.’
Dubois’ promoter, Frank Warren, unsurprisingly has a different view of things, telling talkSPORT: ‘What do you want to see him do – lose his sight?
‘I don’t quite agree that he quit and if that’s people’s opinion then he’s obviously got to prove in the future when he comes back that’s not the case.’
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