We analyse the credentials and statistics of Mikael Lawal and Isaac Chamberlain as the two British cruiserweights get set to headline BOXXER's latest fight card at London's Bethnal Green on Saturday night.
One man’s misfortune is another man’s gain. In this case it’s not just one but two men that have benefitted from the withdrawal of Dan Azeez who pulled out of his fight against Joshua Buatsi on Saturday night.
The chief support was set to be a tasty looking grudge match between British cruiserweight champion Mikael Lawal and Isaac Chamberlain.
Saturday’s card has now been moved from the O2 Arena and instead will take place at the historic York Hall.
With their own fight having been postponed once already the tension between Lawal and Chamberlain has grown to a level of real disdain for one another.
Will Lawal still be the British cruiserweight champion or will Chamberlain finally fulfil some of his potential by landing the biggest prize in his career so far?
Let’s have a look at the tale of the tape…
|Mikael Lawal||Isaac Chamberlain|
|Height:||6ft 2ins||6ft 2ins|
|Trainer:||John Edwards||Bobby Mills|
|Record:||17-0 (11 KO's)||15-2 (8 KO's)|
|Last Fight:||Won (RTD) v David Jamieson (Nov 2022)||Won (PTS) v Dylan Bregeon (June 2023)|
The British cruiserweight scene has often been a thriving one with fighters who appeal to the hardcore fans of the sport.
Ring warriors Dennis Andries and Carl Thompson once held the Lonsdale belt and in recent years Richard Riakporhe and Chris Billam-Smith have been proud owners as well.
Mikael Lawal is something of an unknown quantity, despite being the current champion.
Before forcing David Jamieson to retire from their vacant title bout 11 months ago you would have been hard pushed to pick out Lawal’s best win.
Four years ago, the Nigerian born Londoner won the three-round format Ultimate BOXXER tournament where he beat Jamieson in their first encounter. Five fights since then doesn’t scream activity but does at least prove there are little miles on the clock.
Lawal is a man who gets the job done.
He won’t blind you with the sweet science, but the 28-year-old has a determination about him born from his tale of survival in Nigeria that makes him hard to shift.
Isaac Chamberlain isn’t just fighting the British cruiserweight champion, he is fighting the past of a man who uses previous hardships to drive him on to greater things.
|Physicality||Not the quickest|
|Poses a good hook||Predictable|
Isaac Chamberlain is in danger of falling into the category of, ‘What might have been’.
Having sparred the likes of Oleksandr Usyk and Deontay Wilder in the past, Chamberlain’s abilities have never been in doubt - but inactivity, a fighter’s worst nightmare, has stalled a career that promised much more than it has delivered.
After his rivalry with Lawrence Okolie packed out the O2 Arena for a fight dubbed ‘British Beef’, Chamberlain should have become a star overnight win or lose.
Not only did he lose, though, but he did so in a fight that was an eyesore and one that received more ridicule than respect.
17 fights in nearly nine years averages out around two every 12 months, which in boxing circles is nowhere near enough.
Chamberlain is now 29 and although his impressive performance against Chris Billam-Smith showed his capabilities, and toughness, it was still a defeat.
His career is now in a position where a third defeat won't quite signal the end, but there's no doubt that a win is much-needed!
Claiming the British title could be the kickstart for Chamberlain to begin to fulfil his potential.
|Good ring IQ||Can be walked down|
|Speed||Open to hooks on the inside|
|Judges distance well||Spends too long on the ropes|
Full Fight Markets
All odds displayed within this article were correct at the time of writing and are subject to fluctuation.