Tyson Fury has locked down his training camp to focus on preparing for Oleksandr Usyk, but the departure of a sparring partner recently sent the rumour mill into overdrive.
Jai Opetaia – who will fight on the undercard against Mairis Breidis and was selected for sparring as a good match for Usyk – flew back to Australia to prepare around more orthodox fighters.
Despite his own team saying that there was no knockdown in sparring that caused him to leave, talk started and former cruiserweight champion Johnny Nelson said he has heard Fury is getting ‘turned over’ in the gym.
Speaking on TalkSPORT, Eddie Hearn, promoter of Opetaia, set the record straight.
“Johnny Nelson was adamant that Fury had been dropped in sparring by Jai Opetaia. Jai Opetaia is with Matchroom, he’s a cruiserweight, a tremendous fighter. As far as I’m concerned, it’s absolute rubbish. I mean Jai flew in, he did five rounds with Tyson Fury. He will set about him as he always does, but as I understand it there was nobody that was hurt or got dropped in the spar. After that Jai went back because it was all southpaws, and he’s fighting Mairis Breidis who’s an orthodox fighter. I think it’s absolute rubbish.”
Contrary to Nelson’s beliefs, Hearn says he has heard that the camp is going well.
“We work closely with Spencer Brown from Goldstar, and as I understand it, Fury’s having a great camp.”
Fans won’t find out the true nature of Fury’s preparation until fight night, where he will face perhaps the toughest test of his career in Usyk.