Sexton’s sympathy for world title hopeful Chisora

Norwich heavyweight Sam Sexton admitted old adversary and recent sparring partner Dereck Chisora will be 'devastated' at his late world title call off against injured champion Wladimir Klitchsko.

The big Ukranian has pulled out of his scheduled weekend bout in Germany with British and Commonwealth champion Chisora after injuring his lower back. Sexton revealed yesterday Chisora had been in tip top shape to cause a major upset after working with the Londoner at his Scottish training camp.

'What can you say? I'm absolutely devastated for him,' said Sexton, who lost his Commonwealth belt to Chisora in a bruising nine round defeat earlier this year. 'He went out there with a job to do and a shot at the world title and now it's all over and there is nothing he can do about it. If I tried to put myself in his shoes that must be so hard to take. I had to pull out of a fight with a hand injury before, but when it's through no fault of your own or no injury on your part that must be tough.

'You know in boxing it's a lot about timing and I'm not 100% sure what the situation is now in terms of obligations and whether the guy will want to fight Dereck. He is the world champion at the end of the day so that one is definitely in his court. I know for a fact from sparring with him that is was in good shape and he really fancied his chances in this fight.'

Sexton is due to make his ring return early in the New Year and insists a third shot at his domestic rival is a major motivating factor after two previous defeats.

'You never know,' he said. 'We've talked about it before. I've just got to get back in the ring and do my thing next year and if his fight comes off and he wins the title then my name might be put forward for the WBO title. That would be great.

'It's not just the fact of calling the fight off but for Dereck he will have trained so hard for so many weeks for that one night when he wanted it all to come together. To get out to Germany and be so close to the fight must be mentally tough.'

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Sexton admitted his September title defeat against Chisora left him rueing a missed opportunity - although there were extenuating circumstances.

'It was the scenarios at the time,' he said. 'Before this year I'd had a clear run at things, no problems, but there were a lot of personal problems and I let them take over. I shouldn't have done, but I did. I let them get into my head and my mind just wasn't on the job, but we get this year out of the way and go again.

'For me, boxing is not just a job but also a hobby and I wasn't enjoying it. Things are on the up again and I'm glad to be back in the gym, whereas before I was training very hard, I was in peak condition, but my mind wasn't in the gym.'