A war-worn Tyson Fury has spoken out following his split decision win over Francis Ngannou in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, responding to Oleksandr Usyk’s calls for their fight date to now be cemented.
Not many boxing fans expected ‘The Gypsy King’ to be on the floor during the contest, but that he was when the former UFC Champion landed a counter left hook in the third round. Fury made it to his feet and took the win over ten rounds.
Speaking the day after, he paid his respects to Ngannou in an interview with Boxing King Media.
“You can’t take anything away from Francis Ngannou. He’s a good fighter, he gave me a very good fight and that was it. I trained very well, I prepared very good and I don’t have any excuses.
It’s boxing – some days you have good days, some days you don’t. You crack on and continue. Keep moving forward … I’ve I didn’t train as hard as I did I probably wouldn’t have got through that fight.”
Whilst not making excuses for the performance most are calling poor, the undefeated WBC Champion did say he felt the ring rust, his last contest being in December 2022 against Derek Chisora.
“I felt my timing was quite off. I’ve been out the ring nearly a year again. A little bit of ring rust. It was what it was. It was far from vintage Tyson Fury.”
He confirmed there are no serious injuries preventing an already-signed undisputed fight with Usyk going ahead.
“Just some surface bruising really. There was a bit of a head clash in there and obviously a couple of punches as well. Nothing major. No serious injuries.”
Fury’s promoter Frank Warren has said that the highly-publicised December 23 target date is now likely off the table, even despite Usyk saying that it’s in the contract.
The fighter said he would leave it to his team to organise.
“I’m just going to leave it to the guys who’s promoting it and putting the event on. I’m going to go back now, take a rest and get back in the gym.”
“Get yourself prepared [Usyk] and we’ll put the biggest fight of our generation on.”
— Boxing King Media (@boxingkingmedia) October 29, 2023
News as to the date for the four-belt clash – also set for Riyadh – is expected over the next few weeks.