Oleksandr Usyk and Dereck Chisora face each other
A press conference for Usyk v Chisora took place in March before the bout was postponed

Briton Dereck Chisora’s heavyweight bout against unbeaten Ukrainian Oleksandr Usyk, originally scheduled for May, will take place on 31 October.

The venue of the fight is yet to be confirmed and there will be no fans because of new government restrictions.

Chisora, 36, has not fought since a fourth-round stoppage victory over compatriot David Price in October 2019.

Usyk, 33, is a former undisputed cruiserweight champion who stepped up to heavyweight last year.

“To bounce back with this fight at this time is so important for boxing,” said promoter Eddie Hearn.

“You’ve either got to sit back and say ‘it’s not possible’ or find a way to make it happen.

“It’s an absolute firecracker and a fight that’s so important to the heavyweight division over the next few months.”

Chisora has a record of 32 wins and nine defeats in 41 professional bouts and is managed by former rival and two-weight world champion David Haye

“It’s my home turf and after such a tough year for everyone, I’m going to give the British public the Halloween party they deserve,” said Chisora.

Usyk, a 2012 Olympic gold medallist, comfortably won on his heavyweight debut in October 2019 by stopping Chazz Witherspoon in the seventh round, extending his career record to 17 wins and no defeats.

It was Usyk’s first fight since he defended all four world cruiserweight titles against Britain’s Tony Bellew in November 2018.

“I have really missed boxing,” said Usyk. “I am working hard in my training camp to show a spectacular performance on 31 October.

“I expect a real test in Dereck – he is strong, tough and resilient. He is a really big guy and he hits hard.”

‘A tough night for Del Boy’ – analysis

BBC Sport boxing reporter Luke Reddy:

A wonderful clash of styles will be on offer as the tough, durable, battle-hardened Chisora goes up against the fleet-footed, silky Usyk.

Will Chisora be able to get close to a man so well schooled? And given Usyk will have had just one fight in almost two years when they do meet, will he be ready for the kind of scrap Chisora so often engages in?

Usyk is of course in a mandatory challenger position for Anthony Joshua’s IBF world title and could face the Briton next year. He has much to lose and is a 1-7 betting favourite.

Chisora though has three wins in a row and has pretty much seen it all during 13 years as a pro. Could he land a shock win and maybe even position himself for his own shot at Joshua – his Finchley ABC club mate.

Against top names like Tyson Fury, Vitali Klitschko, David Haye and Dillian Whyte Chisora has historically come up short. This is a similarly tough engagement and in the absence of the kind of London crowd that so often drags out his best work, it will prove even tougher.

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