20 year old ‘Dynamite’ is set to take on AJ Carter in his 5th professional bout on Saturday 16th September.
Despite recently turning 20 years of age, Daniel Dubois is already creating noise within the heavyweight division. Although he is very early on in his career and so far has faced limited opposition, his promoter Frank Warren knows that he is potentially sitting on a goldmine with having this young talent as part of his stable of fighters. Despite not waiting around for the next Olympics, which are set to take place in 2020 at Toyko, and turning professional at 19 without significant amateur experience, Dubois has shown maturity and composure beyond his years. It is different to the path that world champion Anthony Joshua, now 27, has taken. Joshua achieved the gold medal at the London 2012 Olympics and created a big reputation for himself as one to watch out for. However, he exudes the same confidence and intimidation that Joshua did when first turning professional. Knockouts gain attention, and Dubois is certainly getting that after stopping his first 4 opponents. His next test comes on the undercard of Billy-Joe Saunders vs Willie Monroe Jr at the Copper Box in London on the 16th September against AJ Carter, which is a fight for the Southern Area heavyweight belt. AJ Carter is 8-3 and will provide a decent test for Dubois, but he should be able to get through him and move onto the next one.
What makes Daniel Dubois such an exciting prospect is his technical finesse, alongside his speed and power. At 20 years of age he throws excellent power punches, his left hooks and straight right hands in particular are accurate and hit with force. Despite his young age he has shown that he can finish a fight with composure, not needing to rush shots just to finish someone off. He waits for the right moment before going for the knockout. It will be interesting to see how he develops as he goes up against tougher opposition, however what makes him intriguing is that he is likely to improve significantly as he gains more experience. Already he has attracted attention within boxing circles for having spars with the likes of Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury and Lawrence Okolie, another prospect plying his trade at cruiserweight. There have been strong rumours that Dubois knocked down Anthony Joshua in sparring, which Dubois has also stated himself to be true. Although we do not know the exact truth in this, it highlights that he has quickly gained attention within the boxing industry.
After his next fight, and if he wins, what next for Dubois?
His promoter Frank Warren has talked about getting Dubois to fight for the British title belt in the near future. He has asked the British Boxing Board of Control to reduce the minimum age for competing for this belt. The current minimum age for fighting for this title is 21 however Dubois has just turned 20 and under current rules would not be allowed to fight for this belt. This shows the faith that Warren has in his young protégé. Dubois needs to keep himself active, keep developing in the gym and stay disciplined and dedicated to his craft. He appears to have an old head on his young shoulders, therefore I do not foresee a lack of discipline or motivation as a problem for him longer term. Many fighters at his age can lose focus once they get fame and (potentially) future fortune, however Dubois comes across as a grounded character who is being guided in the right direction, especially by his father who helps him massively in this regard.
Although it is too early into his career to suggest that he will be a massive name within boxing or will become a British great, he is definitely a name to watch out for as his career progresses. Tyson Fury himself has claimed that Dubois is a fantastic talent who has a phenomenal amount of potential after sparring with him. The next 5-10 fights for him will start to show what he is truly all about. At the moment, his footwork, technical skills, speed and power appear to be solid. However, questions will remain unanswered until he steps up the opposition that he faces and has more fights. For example, will he be able to take a shot? This is heavyweight boxing where one punch can end a fight. Joshua faced the same questions, however proved in his fights with Dillian Whyte and Wladimir Klitschko that he has a relatively solid chin and able to comeback. Another interesting question will be how Dubois develops physically. He is already very well built for his age and will only continue to grow physically. It will be crucial for him to retain his speed and footwork as he grows physically, alongside having a strong mental game and approaching his fights with no fear.
The future looks bright for ‘Dynamite’: watch this space.
Written by: Alex Loughran