Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk have signed to fight in an undisputed heavyweight contest – the first of its kind for over two decades.
Whilst the official date is pending Fury facing MMA star Francis Ngannou, the site is Riyadh and the contract is binding.
Usyk looks to become undisputed for the second time in his career after dominating a tough cruiserweight division, whilst Fury answers the call to face the very best before hanging up the gloves.
Despite the fight being one of the most in-demand in the sport, it was not an easy road to get here. In fact, it was promised last year before the two fighters publicly fell out, ended talks and went their seperate ways.
Fans will remember that a rematch clause in the contract was a real sticking point, perhaps the final nail in the coffin of the ill-fated negotiations.
This time around that doesn’t appear to be the case. ESPN reports that both men have signed to included a two-way clause that is the loser’s to activate post-fight.
Should that happen and the pair run it back, the heavyweight division will only have an undisputed four-belt champion for an extremely short period of time.
The IBF has reportedly already written to the teams involved making it clear that mandatory challenger, Filip Hrgovic, must be given a shot at the belt after the first fight.
If a rematch is in the plans, the belt will become vacant for Hrgovic to fight against the next available contender. It’s thought that the other sanctioning bodies will consider a similar move, although nothing official has been announced.