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Page last updated at 22:19 GMT, Thursday, 18 February 2010

Gold Cup is another Rumble - Haye

David Haye with (l) Denman and Kauto Star
Haye squares up to Denman, left, and Kauto Star before the Gold Cup

Boxer David Haye has come face to face with two heavyweights of the equine world - and likened their forthcoming clash to the Rumble In The Jungle.

WBA champion Haye met Kauto Star and Denman before their Cheltenham Gold Cup battle, and said they reminded him of the boxers in the classic 1974 fight.

"Kauto's talented and flashy like Muhammad Ali, whilst Denman's a slugger like George Foreman," he said.

Haye defends his title in April, while the horses fight it out on 19 March.

"When you see the horses, with their muscles rippling, you can see they are very special. There is an aura about them. They are like athletes," added the Londoner.

Kauto Star (2007 and 2009) and Denman (2008) have both won the Gold Cup already and are trained at the same stables - Manor Farm in Somerest.


Trainer Paul Nicholls said: "We're hoping that one of them can bring back the prize. It's one-all, and this is the decider."

Denman is due to be ridden by Tony McCoy at Cheltenham, and Nicholls was confident of success despite the gelding unseating the 14-times champion jockey at Newbury on Saturday.

"There's nothing wrong with him at all - it's just that we are going into the race on the the back of a setback," said the trainer.

Haye, 29, who makes the first defence of his title against John Ruiz of the United States in Manchester on 3 April, would not say which horse he thought would win the Gold Cup.

However, if the race follows the form of Ali and Foreman's battle in Zaire, it will be Kauto who brings home the Cheltenham crown.

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see also
Imperial Commander lands Gold Cup
19 Mar 10 |  Horse Racing
McCoy to ride Denman in Gold Cup
06 Feb 10 |  Horse Racing
Haye to face Ruiz in Manchester
26 Jan 10 |  Boxing
Haye shocks Valuev to take title
07 Nov 09 |  Boxing
Historic Gold Cup win for Kauto
13 Mar 09 |  Horse Racing
Denman storms to Gold Cup victory
14 Mar 08 |  Horse Racing
Horse Racing results on your mobile
15 Feb 10 |  Horse Racing

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