Tyson Fury has been open in admitting that Deontay Wilder has been the most challenging opponent in a thirty-three fight professional career.
The pair locked horns three times over the course of four years and, although Fury is two up with the other being a draw, he was knocked down four times in the trilogy by the hard-hitting American.
As the WBC Champion leaves that rivalry behind, there are some others in the division waiting for their shot – one of which is Zhilei Zhang.
The heavyweight from China is coming off a career best demolition job of Joe Joyce in London, and was recently rumoured to be in with Fury next.
Speaking to FightHype.com, Zhang said his southpaw skills posed more of a threat to ‘The Gypsy King’s throne than Wilder ever could.
“I’m a bigger threat to Tyson Fury than Deontay Wilder because Deontay Wilder pretty much depends on one single punch to finish the fight. He doesn’t rely on combinations. I feel I can punch with both hands, and I might be a bigger risk than Deontay.”
“Otto Wallin beat him [Fury] up. I feel like he may have a little problem with southpaws. The other thing. It’s hard to find sparring partners like myself. How do you prepare for someone like me?”
Unfortunately for Zhang, he won’t be able to put his theory to the test just yet.
Joyce has activated his contractual rematch clause, and the two are expected to run it back in early September. That means Fury – who is set to fight that same month – must look elsewhere for a dance partner.
At 40-years-old, Zhang’s team will be demanding a world title shot next should he come through Joyce for a second time. He is currently WBO Interim Champion, so set up well to face champion Oleksandr Usyk.