Wood vs Warrington Odds: Preview, Predictions & Betting Tips For The Big Fight
Wood vs Warrington Predictions:
This weekend’s WBA World Featherweight title bout between current champion Leigh Wood, 27-3 (16 KOs) and Josh Warrington 31-2 (8 KOs) at the Sheffield Arena is one rich in competitive promise and betting sites are ready for the opening bell.
In any other era, the two protagonists would be regarded as veterans. Fighters in their 30s, particularly in the Featherweight division are not improving, nor typically able to reach the heights of their 20s.
At 35, Wood has acknowledged that this and perhaps one more fight are the last hurrahs of a professional career that began 12 years ago.
The Clifton Leisure Centre provided the inauspicious back drop for his debut and for a long time it appeared unlikely Wood would soar much beyond those modest surroundings.
As recently as 2020, Wood lost over 10 rounds to Jazza Dickins, the culmination of a long rebuild from a stoppage defeat to Gavin McDonnell in 2014.
Only the most optimistic could have conjured the Indian Summer the Nottingham man has enjoyed since.
Can Warrington Reverse His Apparent Decline?
Former IBF title holder Warrington, now 32, is clinging on to the slippery slope that waits for all fighters, his peak came much earlier. The zenith of that was a pitiless, unrelenting triumph over Carl Frampton in 2018.
Saturday’s fight is five years removed from that night and Warrington’s form has been eroding since.
It is this decline and the unexpected form of Wood, that leads to Warrington’s underdog status.
Widely available at 2/1 with the best online betting sites for boxing for the outright win, the Leeds man will be motivated, perhaps refreshed from a 10-month lay off.
He will also be aware this is his final opportunity to add lustre to an otherwise frustrating conclusion to his career. His style would be undervalued by a busy, volume puncher description.
He is cuter and more varied but his recent opponents; Mauricio Lara and Luis Alberto Lopez were harder punching, younger, fresher and- most significant of all - unpredictable.
Within those performances Warrington’s self-belief appeared to wilt, in the face of heavy shots thrown from unconventional angles.
The proud Leeds man had no answers and although the record shows a MD12 loss to Lopez, he was second best as he undoubtedly had been in defeat to Lara the year before.
A performance in which he endured considerable punishment and a 9th round stoppage loss.
Do The Warrington Losses To Lara And Lopez Deceive?
Wood will present fewer of those unorthodox angles and will be less perplexing to fight than the Mexicans proved despite the disparity in form, activity and Wood’s recent win over Lara.
Supporters of the former champion can point to important wins over Lee Selby, the elusive Kid Galahad and ‘bookend’ wins versus Kiko Martinez, the Spanish road warrior, at either end of Warrington’s prime years.
For those who believe Warrington can roll back the clock and deliver another pulsating win, with busyness and smart offence, 4/1 is available with betting apps for the points decision victory.
This conclusion requires belief that Warrington can do what other pressure fighters, like Barry McGuigan and Ricky Hatton could not, i.e, maintain the exuberant output of his 20s in to his 30s.
Scant evidence that he can. It assumes that much of Warrington’s travails these past three years are the result of circumstance; the absence of his partisan crowd for key fights and the mercurial nature of the two world class Mexicans he encountered.
Experience encourages punters to resist the sentimentality this is likely to represent.
Activity is important and this will be Wood’s third fight of 2023 as he prepares to capitilise on his late bloom in an attempt to secure a career crescendo at Nottingham Forest’s City Ground stadium in 2024.
In rematching Lara, three months after losing in devastating knockout fashion, Wood proved the naysayers wrong by finding a tactical plan to negate Lara’s attacks and the discipline to execute it.
His ring-generalship and composure were exemplary and while Warrington presents a different challenge, I believe Wood has the chin, fitness and calmness to outmanoeuvre him.
Bets For The Wood vs Warrington Bout
Wood will anticipate a torrid opening, Warrington can be safely assumed to feed off the atmosphere and try to recreate the zeal of his Frampton performance.
If Wood navigates that early blizzard, he can establish his jab and should be able to match or better Warrington’s strength on the inside and push back a tiring Warrington later in the fight.
Knockdowns are possible and could factor in to your betting, Wood, who is 8/15 with Spreadex to win, is probably the bigger hitter of the two - with his late knockout of Michael Conlon the most conspicuous example.
However, unless either fighter has regressed further, and that is more likely to be true of the inactive Warrington, then a long fight seems probable.
As tough and reliable as Warrington once was, there is evidence enough to encourage investment in Wood.
Perhaps that will come late, by stoppage, which leads us to the tempting price of 10/1 available with Ladbrokes on Wood to win Rounds 10-12.
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