Tyson Fury not concerned about eye cut ahead of Oleksandr Usyk fight

By Sports Desk March 06, 2024

Tyson Fury has no concerns about his recent cut jeopardising the rearranged undisputed world heavyweight title fight with Oleksandr Usyk, but would be willing to fight with “blood everywhere” on May 18.

A proposed date of February 17 in Saudi Arabia had to be shelved after the British boxer suffered a “freak cut” above his right eye in sparring.

It forced the eagerly-anticipated contest to be postponed 15 days before all the heavyweight belts were set to be on the line, but Fury has dispelled fears of a repeat with an appearance in Riyadh ahead of Anthony Joshua fighting Francis Ngannou, who lost a split decision to Fury in October.

“It is healing good. I am not concerned. I never was concerned about the cut,” Fury told DAZN.

“From cut date to fight date was 15 weeks. A cut heals in about eight or nine weeks so I had plenty of time and if the cut opens in the fight, so f*** it!

“If it opens in the fight, there will be blood everywhere and so what? Don’t stop the fight. Let it continue because it’s an undisputed heavyweight championship fight. When I start camp at the end of March, I’ll be ready for sparring.”

A new date of May 18 was quickly rearranged to ensure the first undisputed world heavyweight bout of the century would still take place in 2024.

Fury hit back at his critics and insisted he would beat Usyk, who holds the WBA, IBF and WBO belts, before facing the winner of Joshua versus Ngannou.

“There are so many belts on the line and nothing competes with that,” WBC champion Fury said.

“This is the fight of the ages, nothing can compare with this. Not a show fight, not a crossover fight, not YouTube boxing, nothing. This is two undefeated world heavyweight championships colliding for all the belts and it hasn’t been done since whenever.

“Both guys fighting have beat everybody else so this is it. Whoever wins this fight is the best of this era regardless of what anyone’s opinion is or what anyone wants to say. Whoever wins out of me and Usyk is the best of this era.”

On Ngannou’s prospects against Joshua, Fury admitted: “I didn’t have a good night (in October). I had a lot of problems, but I am not here to make excuses.

“I can’t really gauge how good or bad he was because of how poor I was. Watching the fight, that’s what I am here for. The winner of these two will get a shot at a world title from me after I’ve beat Usyk twice this year.

“If Francis wins, it sets up a massive rematch for me and Francis, but if AJ wins, it sets up a big British fight for me and him.

“For me, I have got no money on either side of them so whoever wins it is a bonus because it’s a massive fight either way providing I get through Usyk twice.”

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  • Fury to face Usyk in December rematch, says Saudi Arabian official Fury to face Usyk in December rematch, says Saudi Arabian official

    Tyson Fury's rematch with Oleksandr Usyk will take place in Riyadh on December 21, according to the chair of Saudi Arabia's general entertainment authority Turki Alalshikh.

    Earlier this month, Usyk beat Fury by virtue of a split decision to become the first undisputed world heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis held the WBC, WBA and IBF belts from November 1999 to April 2000.

    It was the first defeat of Fury's professional career, with two judges scoring the fight 115-112 and 114-113 in favour of Usyk, and the third scoring it 114-113 to Fury.

    Fury subsequently described it as "one of the daftest decisions in boxing" and said a second bout would take place in October, with both fighters confirmed as holding a rematch clause in advance of the first fight.

    That date has now been pushed back, but Fury will get a chance to avenge his loss in December.

    In a post on X on Wednesday, Alalshikh wrote: "The rematch... is now scheduled on the 21 of December 2024 during Riyadh Season.

    "The world will watch another historical fight again. Our commitment to boxing fans continues. We hope you enjoy it."

    On Tuesday, Fury's promoter Frank Warren told Sky Sports he was confident the Gypsy King would bounce back. 

    "I spoke to him [Fury] after the fight and obviously when he got back just to make sure he's okay. He was very disappointed but very philosophical," Warren said.

    "It was a fabulous fight, two absolute gladiators who didn't leave anything in the ring in an epic fight, the most important fight of the 21st century. It was a very, very close fight and I think it will be an even bigger one next time."

  • 'I believe I won' - Fury loses historic undisputed championship to Usyk 'I believe I won' - Fury loses historic undisputed championship to Usyk

    Tyson Fury voiced his frustration after suffering the first defeat of his career to Oleksandr Usyk in their undisputed world heavyweight title fight in Saudi Arabia.

    Usyk won by split decision to become the first undisputed heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis, and the first to unite all four belts.

    The scorecards read 115-112 and 114-113 in favour of Usyk, while a third judge scored 114-113 to Fury.

    After an even start, the momentum shifted in a brilliant ninth round for the Ukrainian as he caught Fury with a left hook, forcing the referee to give him a standing count before the bell saved him from a further onslaught.

    A defiant Fury was not happy with the result, suggesting that Usyk received a sympathy vote from the judges.

    "I believe I won that fight," he said in the ring. "I believe he won a few of the rounds, but I won the majority.

    "His country is at war, so people are siding with the country at war. Make no mistake, I won that fight, in my opinion.

    "It was one of the daftest decisions in boxing. We run it back in October. I'm not going to sit here and cry and make excuses."

    Usyk remained undefeated as he took Fury’s WBC belt to add to his WBA, WBO and IBF collection.

    "Thank you so much for my team. It's a big opportunity for my family, for my country," an emotional Usyk said afterwards. "I'm very happy.

    "My people will be very happy. I think it's a big win, not only for me, it's a big win for my country, for soldiers who now defend my country.

    "I think my father now is watching over me and is very happy. Dad, I love you. I can, you told me I can."

  • John Fury appears to headbutt member of Team Usyk ahead of undisputed bout John Fury appears to headbutt member of Team Usyk ahead of undisputed bout

    Tyson Fury's father John Fury was left with a nasty cut on his face after appearing to headbutt a member of Oleksandr Usyk's entourage at a pre-fight media day on Monday.

    WBC belt-holder Fury will face Usyk for the undisputed world heavyweight title in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Saturday, with both men defending undefeated professional records.

    With both fighters and their camps present at a hotel in the city for media duties on Monday, the build-up to their bout – the most eagerly anticipated in the heavyweight division in recent years – got off to a chaotic start.

    Fury's father was pictured with blood running down his forehead after becoming involved in an altercation with a man wearing a Team Usyk tracksuit.

    Widely shared footage on social media appeared to show him headbutting the man, who then had to be restrained by other members of Usyk's entourage.

    It was later reported that the Saudi Arabian authorities were aware of the incident but did not plan to take any action.    

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