Tyson Fury targeting comeback in July

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Eager for a return: Tyson Fury

Tyson Fury will target a comeback fight on July 8, provided he overturns a suspended drugs ban at a UK Anti-Doping hearing on Monday.

Fury has not fought since beating Wladimir Klitschko for the world heavyweight titles in November 2015, due to a combination of drug issues and mental health concerns.

But in the wake of Anthony Joshua’s stunning Wembley win over Klitschko, Fury has returned to training and is intent on securing an all-British super-fight with the new champion.

Fury’s camp are confident they can avoid further sanction from UKAD, which banned him over a positive test for nandrolone in June last year, only to suspend the sanction pending an appeal and further investigations.

But Fury must also convince the British Boxing Board of Control that he deserves to win back his boxing licence, which was stripped after his admission he had taken a recreational drug, as well as subsequent mental health concerns.

Fury’s promoter Frank Warren told BBC Radio Five Live’s Sportsweek programme: “He has been having treatment and the view is that after nearly 18 months now he is mentally fit to resume training.

“The bottom line is we believe and hope the treatment has been successful and hopefully he gets his licence back because it is good for him to earn money as a boxer, but more importantly it is good for his health and well-being that he has something going for him in his life.

“Provided Tyson is OK he has said he would like to fight on July 8. There’s no problem arranging that, but the most important thing is he’s 100 per cent mentally well before he gets back in the ring.”

If Fury does win his case with UKAD, the return of his licence will be no mere formality, with the BBBC expected to take some time to consider a number of factors before deciding whether to allow him to fight again.

Warren added that ideally Fury would have a number of warm-up bouts before facing Joshua, despite the former champion’s claim he was so unimpressed with Joshua’s win over Klitschko that he could fight and beat him without a warm-up.

Warren added: “I honestly do believe that it will not be long before he gets his belts back – he’s head and shoulders above all the other heavyweights in the world at the moment.

“You look at the performance of Anthony Joshua which was brave, heroic and very, very exiting – but the difference in how they handled Klitschko was vast and Tyson was far superior.”

Provided by Press Association Sport

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Canelo Alvarez to meet Gennady Golovkin after battering Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.

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Saul “Canelo” Alvarez cruised to a unanimous decision over Julio Chavez Jr. in a 12-round mismatch Saturday then announced in the ring that his next fight would be against Gennady Golovkin.

After crushing Chavez, the WBO light middleweight champ said he is set to face middleweight champ Golovkin on September 16.

“Golovkin, you are next, my friend. Where are you? It’s on,” Alvarez said before bringing Golovkin into the T-Mobile Arena ring with him.

Golovkin didn’t have to travel far to make the announcement as he watched Alvarez’s fight from ringside in Las Vegas.

“Congratulations,” he told Alvarez. “I feel excited to be part of this big drama show.”

With his win over Chavez, Alvarez claimed Mexican bragging rights on Cinco de Mayo weekend.

“I showed I can move, box and do all those things against a fighter who was bigger,” Alvarez said. “He wouldn’t throw punches.”

The 26-year-old Alvarez used Chavez for target practice, landing jabs, hooks and combinations at will as he won every round of the 164-pound (75 kg) fight on all three judges’ scorecards.

Chavez, who has a four inch (10 cm) height advantage, was booed during and after the fight by the Vegas crowd.

Alvarez treated the lopsided bout as if it were a sparring session, even standing between rounds for the entire fight.

“I never sit down during sparring and it is not necessary there and it wasn’t necessary here. I told my corner I wouldn’t sit down until it was necessary,” Alvarez said.

He landed 228 punches to just 71 for Chavez and an incredible 31 percent of his jabs connected as he had his way with former champion Chavez, who has largely made his career off the name of his famous boxing champion father Julio Cesar Chavez Sr.

Alvarez improved to 49-1-1 with his only loss coming against Floyd Mayweather in 2013.

There was no title on the line Saturday as Alvarez moved up in weight to fight the much bigger Chavez at a catchweight of 164lbs.

Canelo Alvarez v Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.

Alvarez was the heavy favorite going into the fight and it didn’t take long to see why. Chavez had no answer for the punches from Alvarez which often came in combinations of three, four and sometimes even six.

Chavez, 31, was bleeding from the left nostril in the fifth round. By the final round, he was bleeding from both nostrils and his left eye was almost swollen shut.

He said Alvarez’s counterpunches were taking a toll on him.

“He beat me. If I attacked more, I would be open for more counterpunches,” Chavez said.

Provided by Agence France-Presse

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Mike Tyson on Anthony Joshua, heavyweight division, the UFC and more

Alex Rea 6/05/2017
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Sat within the familiar opulence and grandeur which came to delineate much of his life as one of the most recognised athletes on the planet, Mike Tyson is perched over a chessboard.

It’s a fitting setting as the 50-year-old begins to loosen his tongue and relax his broad shoulders into a conversation about the sport he once ruled.

Boxing is, after all, a bit like chess and the potential rewards not too dissimilar to that of the grandiose presidential suite the former undisputed heavyweight champion of the world is occupying.

Behind boxing’s naked violence is a cerebral element, one of tactics and strategy both in and out of the ring. It is also a sport which can elevate athletes from pawn-like status into kings as the sweet science is littered with examples of fighters who have reigned over it and taken on global prominence.

In the mid-1980s Tyson was one such man and he senses a new talent is about to ascend into the crown – Great Britain’s IBF and WBA heavyweight champ Anthony Joshua.

Indeed, Joshua has been catapulted into popular mainstream culture after the 27-year-old conquered the king of old Wladimir Klitschko in front of 90,000 fans at Wembley Stadium last month.

The nature of the clash, one hallmarked by several plot twists and just the right amount of savagery, captured the imagination, not just in Britain where it is widely expected to break the pay-per-view record previously set by Floyd Mayweather’s flop of the century fight with Manny Pacquiao, but across the globe.

The 41-year-old Ukrainian was resurgent after his defeat to Tyson Fury in 2015 and he picked himself up after being put down in the fifth round to drop Joshua in the next session for the first time in his career.

But Joshua rose from the canvas and into his new throne as he tactically conserved his energy before delivering a shattering uppercut and then an eruption of blows to force a sensational stoppage in the 11th.

“There’s a new king now,” Tyson says with a grin. “Anthony Joshua is a superstar.”

Speaking exclusively to Sport360 in Dubai’s Atlantis Hotel for the launch of his Mike Tyson Academy franchise in the UAE, ‘Iron Mike’ revealed his delight in Joshua’s success.

By living up to his pre-ordained hype in a blockbuster bout of worldwide significance, Joshua has helped to inspire the reawakening of the heavyweight giants.

With his transcendent appeal and ferocious physical attributes, the Olympic gold medallist leads a pack of hungry heavyweights with names like Fury, WBC title holder Deontay Wilder and WBO champ Joseph Parker all potential opponents. But Tyson believes Joshua has what it takes to reign atop the division for a long time and bring the big men back into the big time.

“It was great fight because he got back up!” he says. “He got hit with a really good shot but he got back up and even though he was still hurt he pulled through.

“Oh he got heart! He got it for sure because he was able to get back up. Klitschko performed really well and I never counted him out but for Joshua to go down and get back up, I don’t care how old Klitschko is 41 or whatever, for him to go down from a clean hard punch and to come back and be successful that says a lot about him.

“I like that he’s patient, too, he’s like Frank Bruno but on steroids (sic). He’s like a super Frank Bruno as far as his toughness and everything. The way he throws them overhand punches it reminds me of him but he’s such a specimen.

“It’s amazing because he’s only had 19 fights and he’s already champion of the world so he has a long way to go. He’s going to do a lot of good things. If he can keep his mind right and stay out of controversy he’s going to make a lot of money.”

The victory ensured Joshua stayed perfect with his record stretching to 19 fights, 19 wins and 19 stoppages. That he has reached the pinnacle of boxing having only gloved up for the first time nine years ago is a testament to not just Joshua’s discipline but his mental fortitude. Tyson, though, believes there is another feature of Joshua which could see him become one of the most successful athletes of all time.

“AJ is the superstar. I’ve never seen an entrance quite like his before with the flaming ‘A’ and ‘J’,” he adds. “That’s why he’s going to change boxing because that’s entertainment. It’s not just about knocking guys out.

“He’s the big man around the campus now. The heavyweight champion is the man, especially a guy like that who is knocking guys out quick. He looks like the heavyweight champion too, the way he carries himself and the shape he is in. Apart from Klitschko, most of the heavyweight division look like truck drivers.”

In Tyson’s own words, one fighter has seemingly altered what was a bleak landscape for boxing. Indeed, the lingering stench from May/Pac two years ago coincided with the rise to prominence of the UFC and headed by superstar names like Ronda Rousey and Conor McGregor, a definite shift in popularity saw MMA progress as boxing regressed.

Tyson himself is a fan of MMA and has regularly been seen Octagon-side with close friend UFC president Dana White. And while the former ‘Baddest Man on the Planet’ is a keen follower of the UFC – noting bantamweight champ Cody Garbrandt as one of his favourite fighters to watch – he believes the balance of power is tipping back in boxing’s favour.

“I know all the fighters, I watch all the fights, I love it,” he says. “In boxing we have one discipline but we use it in different ways but in MMA there’s so many different disciplines, it opens up so many different ways to win.”

He adds: “Everybody gets their moneys worth with the UFC and that’s really what fighting is about people going there to be entertained.

“That’s why boxing dwindled because there are great fighters but not great entertainment.

“But with Joshua boxing is going to be a whole different ball game and everyone is going to want to watch him fight. He’s got the potential to be one of the biggest boxing stars of all time.”

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