Tyson Fury’s £150million December 23 undisputed fight with Oleksandr Usyk is officially cancelled and could be delayed until as late as February after his showdown with former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou.
The 35-year-old WBC champion was dropped in the third round – by a professional boxing debutant but was crowned the winner following a split decision.
After the fight, the WBA, IBF and WBO Champion, Oleksandr Usyk said: “I want to fight Tyson Fury on December 23, I am ready.”
But Fury promoter Frank Warren confirmed on Sunday, October 29 that the fight won’t be happening in December.
The hall-of-fame Queensberry promoter said: “It is too soon to talk about what Tyson does right now but the Usyk fight is signed.
“It will go ahead but it will not be on the 23rd. It was crazy for some people to suggest that it could still go ahead on the 23rd.
“He is 35 years old and has just done a 12-week training camp and has just been in a tough fight.
“He needs a break with his family, he needs to switch off and we will announce the date when we are ready. But the fight is signed. The fight will happen.
“It will happen early in the new year, late January or February. It will be up to Tyson, it is his body.
“He wasn’t smashed to bits at all but he needs a break.”
Speaking about how Ngannou shocked Fury by putting up strong resistance and display, Warren reckons he saw it coming – to an extent.
“Ngannou was much better than people expected him to be,” he said. “He can box.
“As soon as he shaped up I thought ‘f***ing hell this kid can box’.
“People were talking like Ngannou was some sort of nerd, f***ing computer nerd, fighting in a joke fight.
“But he is a proper fighter whose background is coming from Africa, a tough b******d through and through.
“I didn’t think he would be able to adapt to highest-level boxing at 37 but I got that wrong because he f***ing did, didn’t he.”