David Haye: ‘Tony Bellew is a great champion’
David Haye has paid tribute to opponent Tony Bellew after being stopped in the fifth round at the O2 Arena.
Bellew knocked Haye down twice in the fourth round before a left hand in the fifth sent Haye down again, forcing the referee to stop the fight.
“Tony boxed a great fight, he did some really clever stuff in there. He boxed good, and I didn’t, it’s that simple,” Haye told Sky Sports.
“I thought I was fit enough to beat him, it turns out I wasn’t, but he’s a great champion. Is this the end? It didn’t feel great in there tonight, but I don’t know. I lost to the better man, so congratulations to Tony.”
Haye had previously said that he would retire unless he defeated Bellew convincingly.