Haye calls out Klitschkos


David Haye stopped Monte Barrett in the fifth round of his second heavyweight bout to send out a warning to his world-title rivals last night. The 'Hayemaker' had way too much power for his opponent, who was sent to the canvas five times before the referee waved the fight off.

Things did not start well for Barrett, the American stumbling as he entered the ring at the O2 Arena in London, much to the crowd's amusement.

Haye, a former world cruiserweight champion, then landed some crisp punches in the first round.

With reigning WBC champion Vitali Klitschko looking on, Haye was pushed over by his foe in the second round before the crowd was brought to its feet in the third.

A left hook from Haye sent Barrett to the canvas. The American recovered but was soon back down after a short right from the Briton before the bell sounded.

Barrett was wide open when caught with a left in the following round and was floored again before Haye followed up with a right uppercut to drop his opponent for a fourth time. It was questionable whether he had recovered sufficiently before the bell but he was allowed to continue.

Barrett was looking desperate and he showed it at the start of the fifth. After another slip by Haye, Barrett hit the Briton while he was on the floor and was subsequently deducted a point. Given the state of the scorecards at that stage, it hardly mattered.

Moments later the fight was over, Haye again sending his man tumbling with a right-left combination and this time ref Richie Davies decided enough was enough. A minute and 20 seconds of the round had been fought.

In his post-match interview, speaking alongside Klitschko, Haye said he had his sights set on the world crown.

"I'm the hardest pound-for-pound puncher in the world," he told Setanta Sports."I'm going after him (Klitschko) and his brother (Wladimir, the IBF and WBO champion). Let's get it on.

"Him and his brother are the best fighters in the world at heavyweight. That's why want to fight them."

Klitschko, who has been ordered to defend his WBC title against mandatory challenger Juan Carlos Gomez early in 2009, said he would be happy to meet Haye next year.

"I was very impressed by the fight," he said. "Next year it should be a great fight in Great Britain or Germany in a big stadium."

Haye agreed: "It would be a huge fight. It would be the biggest fight in heavyweight boxing so let's make it happen."