Former two-weight world champion turned pundit Carl Frampton has made his prediction for the contracted but as yet unconfirmed undisputed fight between Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk.
Frampton was one of many onlookers who were shocked by the below-par showing of Lineal and WBC champion Fury in his last outing against Francis Ngannou in Riyadh. Former MMA star-tuned boxing debutant Ngannou managed to defy all expectations and make the 10-rounds competitive, even managing to score an impressive knockdown in the third round on his way to a narrow split decision points loss.
While Ngannou now has many options with the likes of Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua both keen to fight him, Fury’s attention will turn to the much-anticipated fight with Oleksandr Usyk for all four of the world titles. A date is yet to be announced but the fight is contracted to go ahead before the end of the Riyadh season in March.
Speaking to BBC Sport, Frampton still has ‘The Gypsy King’ as the favourite against Usyk.
“I still have Fury as a favourite against Usyk. He obviously needs to be much better than he was in his last fight, which he will be.”
Many people have weighed in heavily on Fury’s poor showing, but Frampton thinks the scorn has been overdone.
“He [Fury] didn’t let the boxing community down, but he’s probably upset and annoyed at himself because it was a poor performance. I couldn’t believe what I was watching at times. I expected Francis to look really wild and amateurish, novicey and be swinging from his feet, and he wasn’t.”
Frampton has advised Fury to cut some of the non-boxing obligations out of his life, from Netflix documentaries to making himself too accessible to the public.
“Fury just needs to have boxing at the forefront of his mind and let other people worry about the media obligations. He just needs to focus on boxing, and he will be back with a bang.”