On Saturday night, Dillian Whyte defeated Jermaine Franklin to hand him the first loss of his career, but it was by no means an easy victory. Franklin offered excellent resistance and threatened him on several occasions, and one judge scored the fight 115-115.
Dillian returned after seven months and a heavy loss to Tyson Fury, and Franklin was considered a solid boxer through whom Dillian would return in style. Although he won, it was far from spectacular because it was too close to a defeat that would have potentially ended his career, and he said so himself.
'if I lost today I would have to hang them up'
“It was simple,” Whyte told Boxing Social postfight. “The talk with my team was if I lost today I would have to hang them up. That was tough. Imagine going into a fight knowing that’s what’s looming in the background.
You know? It’s crazy. Throughout the whole camp there was a lot of pressure because I was thinking (of the consequences of a loss)…It’s not easy, man. You see guys lose and break down mentally in the ring”.
“I don’t care,” Whyte said of critics who believe he did not deserve more than a draw against Franklin. “Listen, there have been many close fights before. I won that fight. I won that fight. I pressed the fight.
From 10, 11, 12, I pressed the fight. I knocked him down but they didn’t call it a knockdown. I didn’t complain. Listen, it’s not the first time that the British Boxing Board of Control (was not fair to me) … when I knocked [Derek] Chisora down [in 2018] they didn’t call it a knockdown and the referee picked him up.
When I knocked Franklin down, they didn’t call it a knockdown. So, what am I going to do? Cry about it?” Several times during the broadcast, it was mentioned that Anthony Joshua could be waiting for him in case of victory, and they showed him sitting in the front row a little over a million times.
After such a victory, Dillian didn't call Joshua out but said that he missed his family and that he was waiting for a vacation, but that's not surprising because he got through the fight. The 34-year-old Whyte lost in the biggest matches of his career against Joshua, Povetkin and Fury, although he avenged the loss to Povetkin quite quickly.