Tyson Fury has declared it is “my time, my destiny, my era and my generation” ahead of his blockbuster showdown with Oleksandr Usyk.

WBC champion Fury is set to fight Ukraine’s WBA, IBF and WBO title-holder Usyk on May 18 in Saudi Arabia in the first undisputed world heavyweight bout of the century.

Regarding his opponent, the former unified cruiserweight champion who made his heavyweight debut in 2020, Fury told a press conference on Wednesday: “It’s not personal, it’s strictly business for both fighters. There’s a lot of stuff on the line, but I don’t hate him, he don’t hate me.

“I respect him, as a man, as a fighter. Everyone has to respect the man’s achievements. Good fighter – I have a tough challenge in front of me. But I’m very confident in my ability and I’m very confident I’ll beat the guy.

“When the cruiserweights step up to the big boys, usually they get found wanting. You can beat the average big ones but you can’t beat the elite big ones, because size really matters. We have weight divisions for a reason and he’s going to be found wanting when he fights me on May 18.

“This is my time, my destiny, my era and my generation. Fact.”

Anthony Joshua urged Francis Ngannou not to quit boxing after he defeated the 37-year-old in just his second professional fight in Riyadh.

Joshua knocked the former UFC champion out in the second round leaving him requiring oxygen in the ring.

Ngannou, who performed well in losing narrowly on points to WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury in what had been his only previous fight, started brightly again in Riyadh, holding his own well for much of the first round.

He was put on the canvas by Joshua with about a minute to go in the round, and when he went down again in the second there appeared to be little chance of Ngannou continuing.

“On the road to the championship, you should always stay focused,” Joshua told broadcaster DAZN. “I thought this was something for the broadcasters to get behind.

“When I saw the fight with Tyson Fury, I thought I want some of that. (Ngannou) is a great champion and this doesn’t take anything away from his capabilities. I told him not to leave boxing. He’s two fights in and he fought the best.”

For Joshua it is now four wins in a row as he put himself in prime position to meet the winner of the May 18 fight between Fury and Oleksandr Usyk.

“The Ben Davison performance centre, I appreciate them highly,” he said. “All of these guys that I worked with until this day. I’m just hungry. Stay hungry and all that good stuff.

“It only takes one shot in the heavyweight division. Joseph Parker is one of my favourite fighters, he had it tough and look at him now. I’m just doing it while I’m here and making the most of it. In five years I won’t be fighting.

“Eddie Hearn and my team will shape my future. I’m going back to my cage and when they let me out, I’ll fight again.

“The people of Cameroon, I appreciate you. Africa united, respect. Everyone here tonight, I appreciate you. Thank you to Francis Ngannou.”

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.”

Francis Ngannou was more interested in trading blows with Tyson Fury than upcoming opponent Anthony Joshua during the final press conference before their Friday night fight.

World heavyweight champion Fury was seated in the front row in Riyadh to listen to what boxing novice Ngannou and compatriot Joshua had to say ahead of the 10-rounder in Saudi Arabia.

Riyadh hosted Ngannou’s maiden contest in the ring when he lost narrowly in a split decision to Fury back in October and the former MMA star was happy to stoke the fire some more with the British heavyweight, who will face Oleksandr Usyk in a rearranged undisputed bout on May 18.

“I really think I haven’t shocked the world. I am still in the factory building, training, learning and I think when I am really going to get it, that is when the world will be shocked,” Ngannou told a press conference.

“As I said, I am just getting started. So, I am really looking for the victory on Friday night but I don’t think that will make the heavy statement of my career because the road is still long and I really intend to gain a lot of major victories like this.

“One over Tyson. One more over Tyson because I had the first one over him and I intend to have the second one.”

This prompted Fury to shout out at Ngannou, who stunned the boxing world when he was able to put down the Briton in the third round of their bout last year.

Ngannou responded: “I am going to wipe the ring with your a*** again. You wipe the ring with your a***.

“I already tell you, you’re only chance is in the boxing ring with the boxing rules. When you step out, you better stay five metres away before I stop your s*** because if I lose it, you’re going to have a really bad time my friend.

“Respect the fact that boxing is protecting us. The rules of boxing are protecting us because without that, you are nothing in front of you. I beat you every day. Twice on Sunday.”

Queensberry promoter Frank Warren had to momentarily step in to get the ‘Knockout Chaos’ media event back on track.

The winner of Friday’s fight is expected to be in line to face Fury or Usyk, who will finally fight on May 18 before a rematch takes place later in 2024.

Joshua had no interest in teasing the prospect of an all-British showdown with Fury, which has fallen through in recent years.

“We’re not looking past this fight. This is my main focus. The incentive and all that stuff? Just the win, that’s it. Let’s focus on my game plan and what I’ve got to do,” Joshua insisted.

The former two-time world heavyweight champion is under no illusions of the task at hand despite Ngannou’s limited boxing experience but admitted he does feel the “pressure” to perform.

Joshua added: “His dream was always to be a boxer, so I know what I am up against. I look at all these small details, but I spar, I do my film study, all that type of stuff, I keep it professional.

“On the night is on the night. That’s different. All that textbook stuff goes out the window and you just have to be relentless. Give my best.

“It is our duty. We work for these people out here, you know what I mean? These are the fights they want to see.

“We are here to entertain them, so I feel the pressure but that’s the life. That is what I signed up to do, what I devoted my life to do so bring on every challenge, every competition and I’ll step up to the plate.

“I’m going to share the ring with Francis. One day I’ll share the ring with Tyson. Last fight I shared the ring with (Otto) Wallin. I signed to fight Baby Miller, I sparred (Daniel) Dubois, I signed to fight Bronze Bomber (Deontay Wilder), I’m serious about the game.

“This is just what we do. It is my duty to work for these guys and to give them entertaining nights.”

Tyson Fury beat Deontay Wilder by seventh-round stoppage to win the WBC world heavyweight title in Las Vegas, on this day in 2020.

Fourteen months on from his controversial draw with Wilder in their first bout – when he out-boxed the champion only for two knockdowns to deny him victory – Fury had vowed to take the fight to the American.

He did just that, flooring his opponent twice and completely dominating the action before Wilder’s corner threw in the towel to save the bewildered champion from more punishment.

A right hand which landed near Wilder’s left ear saw the American go down heavily in the third and a right to the head and left hook to the body in the fifth had a tired Wilder down again.

Fury said: “Big shout-out to Deontay Wilder. He came here tonight, he manned up and really did show the heart of a champion.

“I hit him with a clean right hand and dropped him and he got back up and battled on into round seven. He is a warrior, he will be back, he will be a champion again.

“But I will say, the king has returned to the top.”

The rivalry concluded with a third fight the following year when it was Fury’s turn to take punishment, getting knocked down in the fourth round, only to rise off the canvas and produce a storming comeback and retain his title.

The Briton has since continued his unbeaten record with victories over Dillian Whyte, Derek Chisora and Francis Ngannou but recently pulled out of a fight with Oleksandr Usyk after suffering a cut in the build-up.

Tyson Fury has scotched speculation of an impending retirement from boxing as he mapped out a five-fight plan, including a couple of showdowns against British rival Anthony Joshua.

Unfounded scrutiny about the legitimacy of an eye injury that caused his fight against Oleksandr Usyk to be put back to May 18 led to suggestions Fury may have been contemplating hanging up his gloves.

But Fury, who has flirted with retiring several times during his professional career, reaffirmed his commitment to fighting Usyk in Riyadh, where all four major world titles are set to be on the line.

Fury anticipates a rematch with the Ukrainian in another undisputed world heavyweight title fight before one or possibly two fights against Joshua and then a return bout versus Francis Ngannou.

 

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Tyson Fury (@tysonfury)

 

“I keep hearing talk of people saying I should retire or I’m going to retire soon or whatever,” Fury said on his Instagram, showing stitches above his eye.

“I ain’t retiring – I’ve got two fights with Usyk for the undisputed, twice.

“Then I’m going to fight AJ at least once, maybe twice, if there’s a rematch – if he wants one after the first battering I give him. Then I’m going to fight Ngannou again.

“That’s just the start. There’s five fights for you to whet your appetite. I ain’t going nowhere; I’m 35-years-old and in the prime of my life.”

In his most recent bout in October, Fury (34-0-1, 24KOs) was knocked down but eked out a controversial split points win over Ngannou, who was boxing professionally for the first time.

Just over a fortnight before a much-anticipated bout against Usyk, Fury had to pull the plug because of a cut above his right eye which he sustained in sparring and required “significant stitching”.

But organisers have worked efficiently to rearrange the contest between WBC champion Fury and WBA, IBF and WBO titlist Usyk which will crown the first undisputed heavyweight champion of the four-belt era.

Tyson Fury’s undisputed world heavyweight title fight with Oleksandr Usyk has been rearranged for May 18, promoters have announced.

The much-hyped encounter had originally been due to take place in Saudi Arabia later this month but was postponed this week after the Briton suffered a “freak cut” above the eye in training.

A statement from Queensbury Promotions on X, formerly known as Twitter, read: “The undisputed heavyweight championship fight between Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk has been rescheduled to May 18th in Riyadh.”

Fury, holder of the WBC belt, required medical attention after suffering the injury during a sparring session.

It is the second time his planned fight with Usyk has been delayed after an initial slot in December failed to materialise.

The winner of the fight, when it eventually takes place, will be crowned as the first undisputed heavyweight champion of the four-belt era.

Ukraine’s Usyk holds the WBO, WBA and IBF titles.

Oleksandr Usyk could still fight in Saudi Arabia on February 17 despite his showdown with Tyson Fury being shelved, his promoter has confirmed.

This month’s proposed undisputed world heavyweight fight between Usyk and Fury in Riyadh was postponed on Friday after the British boxer suffered a “freak cut” above his right eye in sparring.

It was the latest twist in a long-awaited saga to have all the belts on the line in boxing’s blue-ribbon division, but Usyk could still ensure the card goes ahead.

Usyk’s promoter Alex Krassyuk confirmed on Saturday morning during an Instagram live that he is working on finding the Ukrainian a new opponent, with Filip Hrgovic being lined up due to the Croatian boxer being the mandatory challenger for Usyk’s IBF belt.

“Will Usyk be fighting on the 17th? We are working on that and in the next couple of days a final decision will be taken,” Krassyuk said.

“There is only one option because the IBF has sanctioned the undisputed fight on the condition that after this fight the champion has to fight the mandatory, which is Hrgovic. That means if the champion fights someone else, he will be stripped of his belt by the IBF.

“With Hrgovic, there is a slight chance.”

Fury apologised on Friday night after confirmation that his highly anticipated bout for all four major world heavyweight titles with Usyk had to be postponed.

The facial cut suffered by the ‘Gypsy King’ required medical attention and “significant stitching”, which rules out the possibility of a new date being quickly found.

Krassyuk added: “If we speak about undisputed, it is still a question whether it will happen some day at all?

“We have tried so many times to make it and the more people doubt it will ever take place.

“Let’s hope, let’s pray. Of course we wish Tyson a soonest recovery and hopefully next time nothing will stop him taking punishment from Usyk.”

Tyson Fury’s showdown against Oleksandr Usyk for all four major world heavyweight titles has been postponed because of a “freak cut” the Briton has sustained above his right eye.

Fury was due to defend his WBC belt on February 17 in Saudi Arabia against his Ukrainian rival, the WBA, IBF and WBO champion, in the first undisputed world heavyweight title fight of this century.

But with just 15 days to go until one of the most anticipated fights of the year, Fury’s promoters Queensberry announced their charge had suffered an injury during a sparring session at his Riyadh training camp.

Fury said in a statement: “I am absolutely devastated after preparing for this fight for so long and being in such superb condition.

“I feel bad for everyone involved in this huge event and I will work diligently towards the rescheduled date once the eye has healed. I can only apologise to everyone affected.”

Conor Benn must be allowed to fight again in Britain to fill the void left by Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury, according to promoter Eddie Hearn.

Benn follows in the footsteps of father Nigel by headlining in Las Vegas on Saturday but the two failed tests he returned for a banned drug in October 2022 continue to have consequences for his career.

While Benn, who has always insisted he is innocent of wrongdoing, had a provisional suspension lifted last July, UK Anti-Doping and the British Boxing Board of Control launched an appeal against the decision.

Hearn expects that to take place this month and hopes a favourable outcome can see Benn granted a licence to fight in the UK again, amid a lull in major fights in British boxing in the last 12 months.

“When you talk about the biggest names in British boxing, you’ve got Fury and AJ but outside of those two, Conor’s right there,” Hearn told the PA news agency.

“With a lot of the big fights and big names moving internationally at the moment, we really need Conor Benn back in the UK. We want this appeal done and dusted to start letting him fill up arenas in the UK.

“He’s young enough to fly that flag for the next couple of years and we need that, British boxing needs it. The toughest thing is not having a plan, a vision or a schedule in terms of what’s going to happen.

“We’re coming to the end of that whole saga now, I’m sure there’s still a couple of bumps in the road but it just feels like now we’re getting some momentum.”

Benn tested positive for female fertility drug clomifene ahead of a bout against Chris Eubank Jr that was ultimately scrapped and his career has been in limbo for much of the last 18 months.

“I think there is a huge amount of frustration in him,” Hearn said. “He still gets accusations and criticism. It’s an incredible amount of someone’s life that he’s had to go through those adversities.”

Even if Benn cannot fight on home soil yet, Hearn is catering to that audience this weekend as the main event against Peter Dobson at the Cosmopolitan will start around 10:30pm in the UK – 2:30pm local time.

This is Benn’s second fight under US jurisdiction, having made a low-key return by outpointing Rodolfo Orozco last September to extend his unbeaten professional record to 22 wins from as many fights.

Hearn is optimistic of arranging a big fight against Eubank Jr, Kell Brook or Liam Smith in late April or early May but recognises Dobson (16-0, 9KOs) could leave those best-laid plans in tatters.

“We took this fight to stay active but he’s calling out all the big names, we want all the big names and we have to deliver,” Hearn said.

“It’s much easier to deliver those fights in the UK because you know you’re going to fill stadiums and arenas. All of it is irrelevant without victory on Saturday, though.”

Nigel Benn fought twice in Sin City, winning both by first-round stoppage, with victory in 1990 over Iran Barkley especially impressive as the American went on to claim world titles in two weight classes.

“There are so many similarities between Conor and Nigel, particularly in the way they fight – it’s identical,” Hearn added. “I see it so clearly, even when I’m talking to him, he is his father’s son.

“That same violence and ruthless streak that Nigel brought to the ring, Conor does as well. You’ll see that in bundles on Saturday.”

Page 1 of 11
© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.