Ben Whittaker: Olympic silver medallist to turn professional after signing deal with Boxxer

Olympic medallist Ben Whittaker has signed a professional deal with Boxxer and will be trained by Tyson Fury's coach Sugar Hill Steward.

The 24-year-old from Darlaston won light-heavyweight silver at Tokyo 2020.

He is the latest member of the 2020 Team GB squad to sign with Boxxer, joining former team-mates Lauren Price, Karriss Artingstall, Frazer Clarke and Caroline Dubois.

"They always say save the best 'till last and here I am," Whittaker said.

"I'm very excited to turn this new chapter in my career. It's an exciting time for me to showcase my skills. I'm now looking forward to getting into camp, where I can add and develop to my game."

American Steward has been in Fury's corner for the Briton's past three fights; consecutive world-title knockout wins over Deontay Wilder and the stoppage victory over Dillian Whyte at Wembley last month.

Steward has likened Whittaker to former American great Roy Jones Jr, a 1988 Olympic silver medallist who went on to become a four-division world champion.

"I'm totally thrilled to have been sought out and chosen by Ben Whittaker of the 2020 Olympic Games on Great Britain's highly talented and dominating boxing team," Steward said.

"I consider Ben to be on the talent level of a Roy Jones Jr in transitioning from amateur into a professional world champion superstar status."

Whittaker signed with Anthony Joshua's management company, 258 MGT, and the two-time heavyweight world champion is backing his fellow Briton to become a big star.

"Ben is a really special talent with a fantastic amateur pedigree," Joshua said. "I think he is ready to set the world boxing scene on fire.

"Everyone get ready for a special journey. Ben is the future pay-per-view star."

Whittaker narrowly missed out on gold at last summer's Olympic Games, losing to Cuba's Arlen Lopez in the final.

He was left crying on the podium after receiving his medal, before stuffing the silver into his pocket.

"You don't win silver, you lose gold. I'm very disappointed - I feel like a failure," he said at the time.

Despite the disappointment, Whittaker - who also won bronze at the 2019 World Championships - was highly sought after by promoters in the professional ranks.

Matchroom Boxing's Eddie Hearn has previously said he could not match the fee offered by Boxxer.

"The offer was twice what we were prepared to pay," Hearn told Boxing Social last week. "Ben knows what we could deliver for him worldwide, but the money is crazy, so good luck to him."

Tokyo gold medallist Price and bronze medallists Artingstall and Clarke all signed with Boxxer earlier this year, with Galal Yafai - who won gold - agreeing a deal with Matchroom.