top of page

Dubois Faces Ultimate Test of Mental Fortitude in Hrgovic Showdown

Daniel Dubois steps into the ring this weekend with the boxing world is poised to witness a defining moment in his career. Known for his physical prowess, Dubois has often been questioned for his mental resilience, especially following defeats to Joe Joyce and Oleksandr Usyk. These losses cast a shadow over his promising future, leading some to believe he lacked the grit required to excel at the highest levels of heavyweight boxing.


In December, Dubois’ promoter, Frank Warren, took a significant risk by pitting him against the controversial but determined American, Jarrell Miller, in a bout deemed “make or break” for the 26-year-old. The typically reserved Dubois found himself facing one of boxing’s most prolific trash-talkers in the lead-up to what would become the most pivotal night of his career.

Dubois rose to the occasion. Displaying newfound confidence, he handled pre-fight press conferences with humor and poise. On fight night, he pushed through fatigue and self-doubt, accelerating through the rounds to stop “Big Baby” Miller in the final round. This victory was a significant step in the right direction, but an even more formidable challenge awaits Dubois this weekend.

Filip Hrgovic, Dubois’ opponent in Riyadh on Saturday, presents a different and more menacing test of character. Unlike Miller, Hrgovic is a confident and unbeaten Croatian who has taken every opportunity to remind Dubois of their one-sided sparring sessions from when Dubois was still a teenager.

Boxers must possess short memories regarding defeat or pain, but Dubois will undoubtedly experience moments of self-doubt as he recalls those sparring sessions. Overcoming such mental hurdles is crucial for any successful boxer, and for Dubois, a strong start against Hrgovic is essential.

“Frank’s always believed in me. He knows I can do it. It’s just about me knowing I can do it and going out there and showing it,” Dubois told Queensberry. “I know what I’ve got and I’m gonna use it.
That [Miller] was a really important fight for me, that hurdle. I’ve done that and on to the next one. I’m giving myself goals and every fight I’ve got to get better. I’ll put in a better performance this time.”

Dubois understands the gravity of the situation. If beating Miller saved his career, overcoming Hrgovic would elevate it to an entirely new level.

“For different fighters it changes,” Dubois said. “It’s who you’ve got in front of you. Jarrell sold the fight well. It was what it was. This one, I think it’s gotta be plain and simple. It’s not complicated with this guy. I’ve prepared in the gym. I’ve sharpened my tools up and I’m ready to go out there and do it.”

Dubois’ trainer, Don Charles, who has been working with him since last May, has played a crucial role in this transformation. Charles, known for his work with another mercurial heavyweight, Dereck Chisora, devised the plan to beat Miller and acted as a motivator and cheerleader in the corner, guiding Dubois through the tricky middle rounds.

Charles believes Dubois’s improved mental strength is a natural part of his growth as both a man and a fighter.

“We’re always the underdog. In my belief, overdog, underdog, sidedog, it doesn’t matter. It’s a fight. We always train to win and we always come to win and that’s what we’ve come here for,” Charles said this week.

As Dubois prepares to face Hrgovic, the boxing world watches closely, eager to see if he can overcome this formidable challenge and solidify his status as a top-level heavyweight.


bottom of page