Tyson Fury is, in the eyes of most, the best heavyweight on the planet right now.
Two-time heavyweight champion, undefeated and with the movement of a much lighter man, ‘The Gypsy King’ has transitioned from an awkward boxer to a big hitter recently.
It’s rare fans see him struggling to deal with an opponent in the ring, especially back in the days where he favoured movement over knockouts.
One such example was his unified title challenge against long-reigning champion, Wladimir Klitschko.
Fury travelled to Germany as the underdog, but ended up bamboozling one of the best heavyweights of all time to a unanimous decision win.
Speaking in an interview with Frank Bruno via Wow Hydrate, the Brit said he expected it to be a much tougher night’s work.
“They’re all pretty tough fights and all important – every one of them. Cause if you slip up here, you go back and got to start again. I think the one for me that I expected to be the toughest fight – against Wladimir Klitschko, who was undefeated in eleven years – it was one of the easiest fights.”
Fury said that the fear factor born from the power of the Ukrainian – who has since been inducted into Boxing’s Hall of Fame – was what motivated him in training camp.
“I think he did need a bit of counselling after that. Mentally focusing for that fight, in training camp we were focusing on like if he hits me, I’m gonna get knocked out. With that fear factor, I went in there and I boxed unbelievable. Then I took his best shots and I was like ‘is that it?’
That was supposed to be my hardest fight. I prepared mentally, physically and emotionally for it to be my hardest fight.”
There was a rematch scheduled, but Fury subsequently spiralled into a period of depression and addiction, only returning to the sport two and half years later to mount a comeback.
He dethroned another champion in his back yard – Deontay Wilder – in 2020 to become champion again. It’s a belt he still holds but will not be defending this year in favour of a crossover bout with MMA star, Francis Ngannou.