Hours after Tyson Fury called a halt to negotiations with Anthony Joshua, he has apparently confirmed WBC ranked number 19, Mahmoud (formerly Manuel) Charr as the man he will face on December 3 in a stadium fight.
‘The Gypsy King’ had set a strict deadline of today at 5PM for Joshua’s team to return a signed contract for the bout. When that didn’t happen, he announced that his offer was now off the table.
There were a few peculiarities with the situation. First, ‘AJ’ had very recently confirmed that he intended to sign the contract once due process was complete. Second, moments before Fury called it all off, his promoter, Frank Warren, was on TalkSPORT discussing the potential fight and giving an indication that it may still happen.
All of that aside, the WBC Heavyweight Champion is seemingly crystal-clear in his view – he will not face Anthony Joshua in December. Instead, he confirmed Charr, a long-rumoured alternative, via his Instagram.
“Looking forward to fighting a man who wants to fight and has fire and desire. [He has] fought some of the best and [is] now stepping up again. Get in there, Charr.”
Tyson Fury says he’s fighting Mahmoud Charr next… pic.twitter.com/c5mJaWcJsO
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) September 26, 2022
Fury also shared a post saying that his After Party speaking tour will be delayed until December as he prepares for the fight. Given the lead up to the announcement, it’s understandable if some fans may see this as a smoke screen – but, until that’s clear, this seems the route being taken.
Charr has indeed faced top level competition in the heavyweight division. He lost to Vitali Klitschko in 2012, Alexander Povetkin in 2014, and Mairis Breidis in 2015. His notable wins include Danny Williams in 2011, Alex Lepai in 2015 and Christopher Lovejoy in 2021.
The German heavyweight responded to Fury’s apparent confirmation via his own social media.
“Tyson, you make a good choice. A good decision to fight the best. Brother, we will give our fans the best show ever. Make sure you are ready.”
Whether or not it’s the fight fans wanted, it seems like it’s the one they’re getting. Having said that, this entire situation has perhaps taught us that nothing is guaranteed until the first bell rings.