With 7 days to go until the roaring 20’s begins it is time to write our wish list for the new year. 2019 has been kind to fight fans, from fleet footed fly-weights to hard punching heavyweights this year has brought the good, the bad, the ugly and everything in between to Britain’s shores. We’ve seen Charlie Edwards hold on and then relinquish his WBC Flyweight title under controversial circumstances. At super-lightweight, Scotsman Josh Taylor proved himself the best in the world with a stand-out win against Regis Prograis, Callum Smith stays strong as super-middleweight champion after seeing off domestic rival John Ryder.
And most notably of course we’ve seen the fall and rise of Anthony Joshua who once again commands the highest position in boxing. As we look forward to 2020, in no particular order I’ve put forward a seven-fight hit list for fights we all want to see in the next 12 months:
1. Anthony Joshua vs Tyson Fury
Potentially the biggest all British heavyweight clash ever and almost certainly the highest grossing pay per view event. This fight would prove to the world that Britain has ownership rights to the ‘baddest man on the planet’. Power vs Speed, The Poster Boy vs The Fighting Man. Each boxer is everything the other isn’t and the event would definitely divide public opinion. A mouth-watering prospect for everyone!
2. Billy Joe Saunders vs Saul Alvarez
Saunders has been chasing down Canelo for years with little interest from the Mexican. When both fighters were campaigning at middle-weight it almost looked like an even match up but with weight fluctuations for both it’s unlikely we will see the match up. Nevertheless the fight, should it take place would no doubt be a technical masterclass.
3. Vasiliy Lomachenko vs Teofimo Lopez
Lomachenko is ‘The Matrix,’ regarded by many as one of the most competent boxers to ever lace ‘em up. Winning a world title in just his third professional contest he is special. However, since moving up to the lightweight division he has shown himself to be almost mortal, with rumours that age and injury are catching up to him. By contrast, Lopez at just 22 is growing with each fight. He recently dismantled Teofimo Lopez in two rounds last weekend and announced himself on the world stage. It would be youth versus experience and perhaps the biggest spectacle there is at lightweight.
4. Josh Taylor vs Jose Carlos Ramirez
Ramirez provides the final frontier between Josh Taylor and greatness. The Scotsman was dominant against Prograis to win the World Boxing Super Series but has previously shown vulnerability to the body. Ramirez has been clinical since he captured the WBC title in March 2018 most recently stopping former world champion Maurice Hooker in Arlington Texas. A 50/50 unification fight is a once in a generation occurrence and the super-lightweight division always provides value for money at elite level.
5. Terence Crawford vs Errol Spence
A legacy fight between two of the top pound for pound fighters in the world! Crawford secured his 27th stoppage recently and is arguably the top boxer on the planet whilst Spence is partially unified champion at welterweight and boasts five former world champions on his resume. We’ve yet to see how Spence recovers from his recent car accident but if he can find the same form as he has had previously then fight fans will be in for a real treat.
6. Dillian Whyte vs Deontay Wilder
‘The Body Snatcher’ has waited patiently as mandatory challenger to Deontay Wilder’s WBC title and despite uncertainty around a UKAD investigation there he remains. We’ve seen Wilder hurt and outboxed in recent contests but his power has proved to be the great equalizer. Whyte has taken on every contender available and his thirst to win the greatest prize in sport is undeniable. If he can take Wilder’s shots and survive the 12 then there’s a strong chance we could have a second British world heavyweight champion.
7. Daniel Dubois vs Joe Joyce
Dubois is without doubt one of the most devastating punchers Britain has seen for a long time. His recent knockout of Japanese unknown Kyotaro Fujimoto was chillingly destructive and stiffer tests are clearly needed. Joyce has beaten some decent names since turning professional in 2017 but has yet to have a career defining win. A fight against Dubois would certainly answer questions about his style and no doubt add fuel to his desires of winning a world title.