Vitali Klitschko to Face Dereck Chisora on Feb. 18, Haye Fight Off the Table For Now

Dereck Chisora will get a shot at Vitali Klitschko and the WBC heavyweight title on February 18. (Photo by Thorsten Wagner/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Reports out of Germany are that Vitali Klitschko will not be facing David Haye next, as was being negotiated recently, but instead will return to the ring on February 18 against another Brit heavyweight, Dereck Chisora.

WBC titleholder Klitschko (43-2, 40 KO) is looking to fight two times in 2012 before considering retirement, but hasn't made his mind up on that either way. Klitschko still wants to fight Haye, and that could happen later in the year. Haye is reportedly not quite in ring shape right now anyway, so giving him time to get ready and perhaps even take a tune-up fight might not be the worst thing.

For Chisora (15-2, 9 KO), it's a just reward after his robbery loss in Finland to Robert Helenius on December 3, a fight that Chisora clearly won but lost on split decision scores. Chisora had demanded a rematch with Helenius, but Helenius winning the European title in the fight put him in a position where he must defend against Alexander Dimitrenko. This is bigger money and a bigger fight anyway, so Chisora is lucky enough here to get what he would have had coming to him with the win he deserved.

The fight is set for Olympiahalle in Munich, and opens the March 3 date for brother Wladimir to defend his championship against Jean Marc Mormeck on that date, which has been rumored since their December 10 fight was postponed due to Klitschko battling kidney stones.

Chisora, 27, was previously set to face Wladimir on two dates in December 2010 and April 2011, before Wladimir finally negotiated his July 2 fight with Haye.

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