Some high-profile names in the support are of the opinion that Tyson Fury, 35, may retire after beating Francis Ngannou with a below-par performance.
The WBC Heavyweight Champion was expected to breeze through the former UFC star in Saudi Arabia, but suffered a shock knockdown in the third round and never really managed to move through his usual gears.
He secured the split decision win, but Ngannou was a clear moral victor. Since fight night, both George Groves and Eddie Hearn, along with plenty of fans on social media, say they wouldn’t be surprised to see the Morecambe man retire.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, Carl Froch said he can’t as things stand.
“I don’t think that’s an option for him. Don’t get me wrong, if he’s gonna dwell on that loss – sorry, win – so much then retire, you can sort of see where his mental fragility is coming into play, but I sincerely hope that he’s right in the head. He seems all right, matter-of-fact, onto the next fight.”
“But he can’t retire off the back of that fight with Ngannou. He just can’t. It would be like me retiring on the back of the first George Groves fight. Although I still think [referee] Howard Foster did the correct thing when he stopped the right … the way it had been received, it felt like a loss.”
In contrast to the many who are desperate to see the already-signed undisputed heavyweight bout with Oleksandr Usyk bout play out, Froch want’s Fury to change his plans and run it back with Ngannou first.
“So Tyson Fury will not retire on that back of that. He’s got to fight Ngannou in a rematch I think. And I think that has to happen before the Oleksandr Usyk fight … It’s all a bit messy and a bit sticky.”
That’s unlikely to happen, with the Ukrainian now pushing for the fight to be announced. It’s expected to take place back in Riyadh in February 2024.