Derek Chisora prepared for world title fight swimming in Hampstead Ponds

Dismissed as a no-hoper in the world-title bout over the weekend, Hampstead’s Derek Chisora was keen not to go down without a fight – or several as it turned out.

But what was to blame for the relentlessly combative mood which saw him clash with David Haye in a post-match press conference?

Could it be down to an unorthodox training method he added to his pre-fight regime?

To prepare himself for the most important – and possibly final – fight of his career, Chisora plunged into the Hampstead Ponds to steel himself to face seasoned veteran Vitali Klitschko at their fight in Munich.

The self-styled “only black man in Hampstead” told a national newspaper before the fight: “Man, that water over at Hampstead is cold. I do it to harden myself up but it makes everything shrivel up — and I really do mean everything.”


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Chisora, 28, has since returned to his home in Hampstead Garden Suburb to lick his wounds and prepare himself for possible criminal proceedings.

He could also face a misconduct charge from the British Boxing Board.

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Regular ponds swimmer Jake Levy, 26, said: “Derek’s the least intimidating of the men you find around the ponds.”

If Chisora and Haye are consigned to the boxing wilderness after their post-bout brawl, it would seem there are far scarier British world-title contenders lurking in the depths of the Ponds on Hampstead Heath.

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