Oleksandr Usyk became convinced that Tyson Fury didn’t want to make an undisputed heavyweight championship fight a reality.
The pair were in advanced talks to stage the contest at Wembley Stadium after an offer from Saudi Arabia didn’t come good.
Hurdles were cleared in the form of a 70/30 purse split in Fury’s favour – demanded by the fighter himself – and the inclusion of a rematch clause.
However, things fell apart when it came down to the financials of that second fight. Usyk ordered his team to ‘pull the plug’, believing the latest sticking point was one in a string of more to come.
The unified champion believes these demands were a telltale sign that Fury didn’t actually want to fight. Speaking to Volodymyr Kobelkov on his YouTube channel, as translated by Boxing Physique, Usyk said it was ‘just a game.’
“My opinion is that he truly didn’t that fight, he thinks I say no [to all the demands]. It was his condition to have a rematch, it was not mine. So I told him, if I win the first fight the rematch will be 70/30 in my favour. It was just a game it turns out, he really didn’t want it.”
“I just agreed everything, everything from his conditions and it turns out he might not want to fight.”
“We really, really thought this fight would happen on 29th. I was really structuring my training, I had a great camp, great improvements.”
With fresh wounds of failed negotiations, Usyk will retreat into another training camp to prepare for his first mandatory challenger, Daniel Dubois.
The fight is being targeted for the end of summer in the UK, and is the Ukrainian’s first test in keeping his belts should he want to keep his undisputed goal alive.