Will Audley Finally Step Up?
Reports have surfaced concerning former Olympic Gold Medal hero Audley Harrison facing Commonwealth Heavyweight Champion Matt Skelton on 9 December in London, England. While the bout has yet to be officially declared, that is expected to come at a press conference tomorrow in the British capital, it's a matchup that offers much food for thought.
In a bout against Skelton, Audley Harrison, 20-2 (15), will certainly have the advantage in height, reach and boxing skills just as certainly as Matt Skelton will have the edge in the heart and desire department against the towering southpaw.
At first glance, this appears to be a complete mismatch. Skelton, 20-1 (18), is the most willful fighter to enter a British ring since the professional debut of Ricky Hatton nine years ago while Harrison is the very definition of reluctant warrior.
But will Audley finally realize his true potential in what is clearly his last top level opportunity where anyone still gives a damn about his career? Will the sharply skilled southpaw finally pull the trigger and make the aggressive brawler Skelton pay dearly for every inch of canvas he advances upon? Because that's what it would take for Harrison to defeat Skelton.
The usual Audley method of moving, covering up and hardly throwing until the last round would have disastrous consequences against Skelton, a man who has built his career on forcing opponents to fight or fall under his lumbering attack.
If Harrison just shows up just to survive for twelve rounds, he will lose the bout and career-wise, have nowhere to go. If he engages Skelton, he'll have to get to Matt's chin before Matt gets to his and that could be a real entertaining battle for as long as it lasts.
Let's hope Audley Harrison fights Matt Skelton like a man who is facing the brink of oblivion.
If he does, he just may find that he has a future in the heavyweight division after all.