Tony Bellew v David Haye II Preview, Betting Tips and Odds

Tony Bellew steps back into the ring against David Haye on the 5th of May 2018 at the O2 Arena in London, determined to end the career of the brash former world heavyweight champion. With no love lost between these two fighters the sequel should be as explosive as their first clash back in March of this year when the Liverpool man stunned the boxing world with an 11th round stoppage. In a rematch billed as “Repeat or Revenge,” both men have a point to prove with the loser almost certainly heading into the world of retirement. 

The orginal rematch was scheduled for the 17th of December, however Haye was forced to pull out due to injury. With the rematch now finally here on the 5 May, the grudge can finally be settled.

The worlds most credible voice in the ring, Boxing News give their verdict exclusively for Betsafe.


Back in March, one of the most bizarre and most memorable nights in recent British boxing history unfolded at the O2 Arena in London as Tony Bellew stopped an injured David Haye in 11 rounds.

Then WBC cruiserweight champion, the Liverpudlian moved up to heavyweight for a grudge match with former two-weight king Haye, who had recently returned to action after several years away.

Bellew – who has since vacated the WBC title and been made ‘Champion Emeritus’ – entered the ring as a significant underdog, but after Haye ruptured his Achilles tendon in the sixth round, he prevailed in the penultimate stanza. Given the bad blood between the two and the unanswered questions surrounding Tony’s monumental upset win, the pair will fight a rematch in the same venue on May 5.

The First Fight

A fractious build-up saw insults – and fists – thrown, with Haye vowing to hospitalise Bellew and being pulled up by the British Boxing Board of Control for his comments. Bellew was well aware of the challenge ahead of him, so much so that he even wrote out his will before facing Haye.

While Bellew toiled away in trainer Dave Coldwell’s gym, Haye spent the majority of his camp in Miami and teamed up with head coach Shane McGuigan relatively late on. A few days before the fight, he travelled to Germany, sparking speculation that he needed treatment for injury. He insisted he was 100 per cent on fight night – something which turned out to be very untrue.

Predictions of an early win for Haye were swiftly proven inaccurate as Bellew, guided by trainer Dave Coldwell, frequently made Haye miss. It was also made clear that Haye’s inactivity had ravaged his timing and range as he repeatedly lunged in, loaded up and generally made a hash of most of his assaults. All the while, Bellew remained composed and did something Haye never expected he would – traded with him.

Then, in the sixth, the script was set alight and thrown out the window. Haye bounced, performed a bizarre wobble, and suddenly looked in serious trouble – his injury had struck. From then on in, the fight devolved into a one-sided drubbing. To his credit, Haye never allowed his then-trainer Shane McGuigan to pull him out as he remained convinced he could draw on his vaunted power to end the fight in one fell swoop. However, with just one healthy leg under him, he couldn’t generate legitimate power and Bellew was able to walk through him.

Eventually, with Haye bundled through the ropes and barely able to rise in the 11th, McGuigan threw in the towel.

What they say

I will have the exact same attitude I had going into the first fight – win at all costs. I will be victorious on December 17 and I will end David Haye’s career. Another loss to me closes the curtain on the Hayemaker. He knows how the first fight went, after five rounds I had him 3-2 up, my plan was never to start strong as David is a front-runner. He’s dangerous early but he tires quickly and he doesn’t get stronger down the stretch. He’s another year old, the body is more worn and he won’t be able to live with a younger, fresher and more active fighter, he just can’t sustain the tempo and pace once we go past three or four rounds. It’s a very dangerous fight but I am looking forward to it. I love The O2 and I wanted the fight to be there. I call the shots this time.

Tony Bellew

I’m excited to give the public the rematch they truly crave, ever since the explosive first showdown earlier this year. On March 4, the script was thrown out the window and the unpredictability of sport revealed itself in its most raw form. Without question ‘The Bomber’ showed great heart, grit and determination to weather the early storm. Credit to him, that he’s willing to step back into the lion’s den and do it all over again. He somehow won the lottery in our first fight, but believe me, he won’t win the lottery twice. I’ve been training every day for over six months. I already feel fitter, stronger and more athletic than I did for our first showdown! On May 5, I will relish the opportunity to re-write the ending of the Haye-Bellew story.

David Haye

Breakdown and prediction

Haye has made significant changes in his preparation for this rematch. He parted ways with Shane McGuigan and teamed up with Ismael Salas, best known for his work with lightweight supremo Jorge Linares, and someone Haye has known for many years.

Haye and his team also claim that, prior to the first Bellew fight, David sparred a minimal amount of rounds, which would explain why he looked rusty. To remedy this, he will have sparred much, much more for this fight – but the question marks around his fitness remain. Haye has long been beset by injuries, and it’s unlikely his camp will have been completely devoid of physical problems, particularly if he’s sparring more rounds than usual.

However, any misconceptions he had of Bellew will have been eliminated and if he did underestimate the Liverpudlian first time round, he won’t do it again.

For Bellew, he has been allowed more time to grow into the weight and now has evidence that he can cope with this version of David Haye.

Rumours and unconfirmed reports that Haye has injured himself again have swirled, but nothing concrete has been unveiled. That being said, it is difficult to pick the Londoner in this fight, regardless of his staggering achievements in the past. At this stage of his career the wear and tear on his body looks to be too much and, as happened in the first fight, if Bellew can make it through the first five rounds relatively unscathed, he can seize control.

Though Haye hit the deck in the first fight, he never looked properly hurt by Bellew so the pick is for Tony to win this one on points, overturning a slight deficit from the early rounds to take over the second half of the fight. 

George Gigney

George Gigney is a respected sports writer for Boxing News, the oldest boxing publication in the world. Established in 1909, Boxing News’ reputation as the market authority comes from over 100 years of experience in the hardest game.