Tyson Fury

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Tyson Fury
GYPSY KONG TYSON FURY.jpg
Fury in 2019
Statistics
Real nameTyson Luke Fury
Nickname(s)
  • Gypsy King
  • The Furious One
  • 2 Fast
Weight(s)Heavyweight
Height6 ft 9 in (206 cm)[1]
Reach85 in (216 cm)[1]
Born (1988-08-12) 12 August 1988 (age 30)
Wythenshawe,
Manchester, England
StanceOrthodox
Boxing record
Total fights29
Wins28
Wins by KO20
Losses0
Draws1

Tyson Luke Fury[2] (born 12 August 1988) is a British professional boxer. In 2015, he won the unified WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, The Ring magazine, and lineal heavyweight titles by defeating long-reigning world champion Wladimir Klitschko in Germany. The victory earned him Fighter of the Year and Upset of the Year awards by The Ring. He was stripped of the IBF title less than two weeks later for being unable to grant a fight against the IBF's mandatory challenger, Vyacheslav Glazkov, having already signed a rematch clause with Klitschko. As of June 2019, Fury is ranked as the world's best active heavyweight by The Ring, second by the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, and fourth by BoxRec.

In 2016, Fury vacated the WBA, WBO after suffering from mental health issues leading to alcoholism and recreational drug use; The Ring stripped him of his last remaining title in early 2018. Later in 2018, following more than two years of inactivity, Fury returned to the ring to challenge for the WBC heavyweight title against Deontay Wilder. The fight was scored a draw, with some outlets calling the result controversial.[3][4][5][6] Fury's performance against Wilder (including recovering from a heavy knockdown in the final round) earned him Comeback of the Year and Round of the Year awards by The Ring, as well as nominations for three further awards. World Boxing News named him Fighter of the Year in a readers' poll[7] while the WBC awarded him Comeback of the Year and Fight of the Year.[8][9]

As an amateur, Fury represented both England and Ireland after tracing his family lineage to relatives in Belfast and Galway.[10] He won the ABA super-heavyweight title in 2008 before turning professional later that year. At regional heavyweight level he went on to hold the British and English titles twice each, as well as the European, Commonwealth, and Irish titles.

Early life

Tyson Luke Fury was born and raised in Wythenshawe, Manchester, England. At birth, he weighed only 1 lb after being born three months premature.[11] His father John named him Tyson after the then-world undisputed heavyweight champion Mike Tyson.[12] He began boxing by visiting the Egan Gym in Wythenshawe, Manchester as a young boy. His family is of Irish Traveller heritage.[13] His paternal grandfather was from Tuam, County Galway, which is also the birthplace of his father, John Fury.[14] The Furys of Galway are ultimately of Gaelic origin, deriving their present name from Ó Fiodhabhra.[15] His maternal grandmother is from County Tipperary and his mother was born in Belfast.[16][17] The Fury family has a long history in boxing;[12] his father competed in the 1980s as "Gypsy" John Fury,[18] initially as a bare-knuckle fighter and unlicensed boxer, and then as a professional boxer.[19]

Fury's younger brother Tommy Fury made his professional debut on 22 December 2018 with trainer and two-weight world champion Ricky Hatton.[20] He is the older cousin of professional heavyweight Hughie Fury.[21] He is also a distant relative of "self-styled King of the Gypsies"[22] Bartley Gorman,[23] hence Fury's own self-styled nickname, 'Gypsy King'.[24] He has also styled himself as 'The Furious One'[25] and '2 Fast' Fury.[26] He is also the distant cousin of professional Nathan Gorman who is also trained by two-weight world champion Ricky Hatton alongside his younger brother Tommy Fury.[27] Despite strongly identifying with his Irish heritage, Fury has had problems in gaining dual citizenship because, in the 1960s, his father's birth in County Galway was not recorded civilly, as Irish Travellers at the time only recorded births through baptism with the Church, rather than officially with the state. Fury's mother is a Burton and he is the cousin of professional boxer Hosea Burton.[28]

Amateur career

As an amateur, Fury represented both Ireland and England. Fury represented Ireland three times at international level. He was based at of the Holy Family Boxing Club in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and later switched to the Smithboro Club in County Monaghan in the Republic of Ireland.[29] In a double international match against an experienced Polish team in 2007, the Irish team lost 12–6 overall; Fury, however, was victorious in both his fights in Rzeszów and Białystok.[30] In another Irish match against the US, Fury won his bout by knock-out.[31] He won bronze at the AIBA Youth World Boxing Championships in 2006.[32]

In England, whilst representing Jimmy Egan's Boxing Academy, he participated in the senior national championships in 2006 but was beaten by David Price 22–8.[33] In May 2007, he won the EU Junior Championship representing England.

As a junior, he was ranked number three in the world behind the Russians Maxim Babanin and Andrey Volkov, but didn't get the chance to represent Great Britain at the Beijing Olympics because each country is restricted to one boxer per weight division and David Price was selected. Price came up through the amateur olympic programme. Fury also unsuccessfully tried to qualify for Ireland. [34] He was however forced to withdraw from the Irish national championships after officials from the Holy Trinity Boxing Club in West Belfast, the club of the then Irish amateur heavyweight champion, submitted a protest regarding his eligibility.[31][35]

He won the ABA super-heavyweight title in 2008 before turning professional later that year,[12] instead of waiting for the 2012 Olympics.[35]

Professional career

Early career

Fury after his pro debut in 2008

Fury made his professional debut at the age of 20 on 6 December 2008 in Nottingham, on the undercard of Carl Froch vs. Jean Pascal against Hungarian fighter Bela Gyongyosi, who Fury defeated via TKO in the first round with a combination to head and body. Then until July 2009 he went on to have six more fights in the space of seven months, defeating Marcel Zeller, Daniil Peratyakto, Lee Swaby, Matthew Ellis, Scott Belshaw and Aleksandrs Selezens all via knockout within 4 rounds.

On 11 September 2009, Fury fought John McDermott for the English heavyweight title, and won via points decision.[36] Fury later said although he was disappointed with his performance he was not unfit for the fight, but had instead over trained in the gym.

Fury scored two more victories against Tomas Mrazek and Hans-Joerg Blasko before facing McDermott in a rematch on 25 June 2010 picking up the vacant English heavyweight title in the process. Another three wins followed a points decisions over American fighters Rich Power and Zack Page in two 8-round matches and a knockout of the Brazilian Marcelo Luis Nacimento in the 5th round.

On 23 July 2011, Fury faced undefeated heavyweight Dereck Chisora for the British and Commonwealth heavyweight titles at Wembley Arena in London. With Chisora aged 27 and Fury just 22 years old, both men went into the fight with a record of 14-0 and despite Fury's superior size and reach, Chisora went into the fight as the favourite. After 12 hard fought rounds Fury won via unanimous decision 117–112, 117–112, and 118–111, with the fight shown live on free to air Channel 5.[37] Promoter Mick Hennessy The fight peaked at around 3 million viewers on Channel 5.[38]

On 17 September 2011, Fury fought 32-year-old fringe contender Nicolai Firtha (20-8-1, 8 KO) in a non-title bout at the King's Hall, Belfast. Firtha took the fight on two weeks notice. The opening two rounds were dominated by Fury. In round 3, Firtha landed a big punch which looked to trouble Fury. Fury regained control of the fight by the next round and forced the referee to stop the fight at 2 minutes, 19 seconds on round 5. Fury admitted he got caught flush, "He caught me with a good punch and I had to come back from it."[39][40][41] The fight averaged 1.03 million viewers on Channel 5.[42]

Fury returned to the ring on 12 November at the Event City in Trafford Park, Manchester to defend his Commonwealth heavyweight title against then undefeated Canadian heavyweight champion Neven Pajkic. Fury suffered an early scare after being knocked down in round 2 following a big right hand. Although Pajkic hobbled Fury again at the outset of round 3, Fury came back to knock down Pajkic twice during that round. The referee stopped the fight after the last knockdown, much to the protest of Pajkic, who declared himself ready to fight on. Many at ringside thought the stoppage premature.[43][44][45] The fight averaged 1.72 million viewers on Channel 5.[42]

Fury vacated his British and Commonwealth belts in order to pursue a future world title match. On 14 April 2012, Fury traveled to Belfast to fight at the Odyssey Arena for the vacant Irish heavyweight title. His opponent was veteran Martin Rogan (14-2, 7 KOs). Rogan had not fought in 18 months and hadn't beaten an opponent with a winning record since February 2009. At 245 3/4 lbs., Fury was fighting at the lightest weight of his professional career to date. Fury put Rogan on the canvas with a left hook in the third round. Rogan went down again in round 5 from a body shot. Rogan made it to his feet, but the bout was stopped at the request of his corner.[46] The fight averaged 1.33 million viewers on Channel 5.[42]

On 7 July, Fury fought for the vacant WBO Inter-continental heavyweight title against American boxer Vinny Maddalone (35-7, 26 KOs) at the Hand Arena in Clevedon, Somerset. Fury weighed 245.5 pounds, the lightest weight of his professional career to date. Maddalone entered with a record of 4-3 in his previous seven bouts. Fury improved his record to 19-0 with 14 stoppage wins, with a fifth-round technical knockout over Maddalone. Fury controlled the fight from the onset and stunned Maddalone with a combination in the opening round. Fury continued to land heavy punches and opened a cut under his opponent's left eye in the fourth. In round 5, with Maddalone taking punches, the referee stepped in and called and end to the bout with blood streaming out of the cut under the veteran's left eye. It was the fifth knockout loss of Maddalone's professional career. In the post-fight interviews, Fury said, "I knew it was a matter of time. I actually called the referee over, he was taking some big shots. I'm still undefeated. I would like to say I'm ready for anyone in the world. Klitschkos, bring them on. Americans, bring them on. Bring on Tomasz Adamek. He's too small for me and I see an early win for me." Promoter Mick Hennessy also stated a world title fight was 'two or three fights away', targeting Adamek next.[47] The fight averaged 1.05 million viewers on Channel 5.[42]

Rise through the ranks

On 12 November 2012, it was announced that Fury would fight American world title contender Kevin Johnson (28-3-1, 13 KOs) in a WBC title eliminator at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast on 1 December. Fury said of the fight, "Johnson is just the kind of opponent that I want at this stage of my career,' Fury said. 'We needed a world class fighter and we have got one."[48] Fury won via unanimous decision over Johnson. After 12 rounds, the judges scored it 119–110, 119–108, and 119–108 in favour of Fury. Many media outlets including the BBC and ESPN dubbed the fight as a poor showing. Fury claimed he would score a good win, just as rival David Price did when he stopped Matt Skelton, a night earlier. Fury however did box disciplined. Fury, with the win, was now in line to challenge for the WBC title, held at the time by Vitali Klitschko.[49][50][51] The fight averaged 1.37 million viewers on Channel 5.[42]

On 20 February 2013, it was reported that Fury would fight highly ranked American former world cruiserweight champion Steve Cunningham (25-5, 12 KOs) in his United States debut at Madison Square Garden Theater on 20 April. The bout was an IBF title eliminator to determine the Number 2 World Ranking, with the winner then needing to fight unbeaten Bulgarian heavyweight Kubrat Pulev for the mandatory position for a shot at the long reigning world champion Wladimir Klitschko. Cunningham came into the fight on the rebound from a controversial split decision loss to Tomasz Adamek of Poland.[52] At the weigh in, Cunningham came in 44 pounds lighter than Fury at 210 pounds. Fury weighed 254 pounds.[53]

Fury fought wildly in the first two rounds of the bout, and was floored by Cunningham in the 2nd round. However, Fury rebounded and handed Cunningham the first knockout defeat of his career with a right hand in the seventh round. Fury was also docked a point in round 5 following a headbutt.[54][55][56] A week after the fight, Cunningham spoke to ATG Radio, claiming that Fury used an illegal manoeuvre to knock him out, "He held me with his forearm. He pushed me in the corner twice - which is illegal - and then he pushed me with his forearm, cocked my head to the left and threw a right hook." Cunningham asked for a rematch, but Peter Fury, trainer and uncle of Tyson said it would not happen.[57] The fight card aired on NBC in the late afternoon and averaged 1.2 million viewers, peaking at 1.7 million.[58] In the UK, the fight aired on Channel 5 and averaged 1.54 million viewers.[42]

The win gave Fury a world ranking of 7 according to BoxRec, a number 2 ranking according to the IBF, 6th with the WBC, and 5th with the WBO.[59]

Fury was due to fight David Haye (26-2, 24 KOs) on 28 September 2013, in a fight which would have seen Fury fight on a pay-per-view platform for the first time.[60] However, Haye pulled out of the fight on 21 September, after sustaining a cut, which required six stitches, above the eye during training.[61][62] The fight was originally postponed to 8 February 2014. Haye pulled out of the fight a second time on 17 November, stating that he had a career-threatening shoulder injury which required surgery, and hinted at his retirement.[63] Fury meanwhile, believed that Haye was making excuses because he didn't want the fight, with Fury himself saying "I'm absolutely furious but in all honesty this is exactly what I expected. Everyone knows I was very suspicious when he pulled out the first time and this confirms to me that he's always been afraid of me and never wanted this fight." Aside from training camp expenses, Haye also cost Fury his positions in the world rankings including an IBF final eliminator bout which would have made him mandatory for a shot at the world title.[64]

On 24 January 2014 it was announced that Fury would fight at the Copper Box Arena against Argentine veteran Gonzalo Omar Basile (61-8, 27KO) on 15 February.[65][66] On 5 February, Basile pulled out of the fight due to a lung infection. He was replaced by American journeyman Joey Abell (29-7, 28 KOs).[67] Fury won the fight via 4th-round TKO, which set up a rematch with Chisora for the Summer. Ring rust showed in the opening two rounds with Abel connected with left hands, which had Fury against the ropes. Fury managed to get behind the jab. Abell was warned for using his head. At this time, Fury floored Abell with a right hand. Abell beat the count but was floored again, this time being saved by the bell. Two more knockdowns followed in round 4 ending the fight.[68][69] After the fight, Fury took to the mic, "Tyson too fast Fury, that's the name, fighting's the game and these are bums compared to me. I want Wladimir Klitschko, he's avoiding me, let's get it on Wlad."[70]

European heavyweight champion

Fury was due to fight rival and heavyweight contender Dereck Chisora for the second time on 26 July 2014, for the European and once again the British heavyweight title.[71] On 21 July, Chisora was forced to pull out after sustaining a fractured hand in training. Belarusian Alexander Ustinov was lined up as Chisora's replacement in the bout scheduled to take place at the Manchester Arena,[72] Fury pulled out of the fight after his uncle and former trainer Hughie Fury was taken seriously ill.[73] However, Fury and Chisora rescheduled the rematch for 29 November 2014 at ExCeL London. The bout was also a WBO title eliminator and shown live on BoxNation.[74] Fury was victorious again after dominating the fight up until Chisora's corner pulled him out at the end of the 10th round. Fury also used a southpaw stance for the majority of the fight, despite the traditional right handed orthodox stance being his preference. Fury used his jab to trouble Chisora and kept on the outside creating a distance with his longer reach. Chisora failed to land any telling punches, and due to Fury's awkward fighting style, end up hitting him below the belt. Chisora was warned by referee Marcus McDonnell in the first round. After the fight, Fury said, "Wladimir Klitschko, I'm coming for you, baby. I'm coming. No retreat, no surrender." Promoter Mick Hennessy said Fury would likely fight once more before challenging for the world title[75][76][77]

On 26 December 2014, Sky Sports News announced that Fury would fight once more before challenging Wladimir Klitschko for his world titles. His opponent was Christian Hammer (17-3, 10 KOs) and the fight took place on 28 February 2015 at the O2 Arena in London. Fury claimed he went for an opponent that would give him a challenge rather than an 'easier' opponent, before challenging Klitschko.[78] Fury went on to win the fight when it came to a halt in the 8th round via RTD. Fury dominated the fight from the opening bell and dropped Hammer in round 5 following a short right hook. Following the fight, Fury called out Wladimir Klitschko, claiming he was ready for his world title shot.[79][80][81]

Unified heavyweight world champion

In July 2015, it was confirmed that Fury would fight Wladimir Klitschko in a world heavyweight title showdown, for the WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, Lineal and The Ring heavyweight titles. Initially scheduled for 24 October 2015, the fight was postponed to 28 November 2015 after Klitschko sustained a calf injury. For this match, Fury trained with the highest ranked heavyweight kickboxers in GLORY, Rico Verhoeven and Benjamin Adegbuyi.[82]

The fight took place at Esprit Arena in Düsseldorf, Germany. Prior to the fight taking place on the night, there was much controversy, first starting with the gloves, then there was a complaint about the ring canvas. Klitchsko reportedly had his hands wrapped without a representative of Fury, so had to do them again. Fury won after twelve rounds by a unanimous decision. The judges scored the fight 115–112, 115–112, and 116–111.[83] Klitshko and Fury showed little offence during the 12 rounds, but Fury did enough each round to take the decision. Klitschko landed 52 of 231 punches thrown (23%) and Fury landed 86 of 371 thrown (23%).

In the post-fight interview, an emotional Fury said, "This is a dream come true. We worked so hard for this. I've done it. It's hard to come to foreign countries and get decisions. It just means so much to me to come here and get the decision." He then took the microphone and to thank Klitschko, "I'd like to say to Wladimir, you're a great champion. And thanks very much for having me. It was all fun and games during the buildup." Klitschko failed to throw his well-known right hand, mostly due to Fury's constant movement and mocking. He said, "Tyson was the faster and better man tonight. I felt quite comfortable in the first six rounds, but I was astonished that Tyson was so fast in the second half as well. I couldn't throw my right hand because the advantage was the longer distance he had." Klitschko had a rematch clause in place.[84][85]

On 8 December 2015, the IBF stripped Fury of its title, as the contract for the fight against Klitschko included a rematch clause, precluding Fury from facing the IBF's mandatory challenger Vyacheslav Glazkov. Fury had held the IBF belt for only 10 days.[86]

Relinquishing world titles

After months of negotiation, on 8 April 2016 the rematch with Klitschko was finally announced, this time with the fight scheduled to take place in Fury's home town of Manchester at Manchester Arena on 9 July 2016.[87][better source needed] On Friday 24 June 2016, it was announced that this fight would be postponed to a later date due to Fury sustaining a sprained ankle in training.[88] On the same Friday, Tyson Fury and his cousin, Hughie Fury, were charged by UK Anti-Doping "with presence of a prohibited substance" from a sample 16 months previously in February 2015, a misconduct the two boxers "strenuously deny".[89] On 23 September, Fury again postponed the fight after being declared "medically unfit".[90] It was reported by ESPN, Fury had failed a drug test a day before he pulled out of his World title rematch. Fury cited problems with depression after a positive test for cocaine.[91]

In 2015 after becoming heavyweight champion of the world, Fury got stripped of the IBF title because he did not agree to fight a mandatory challenger however he could not agree the fight as he already had signed a contract for a rematch with Wladimir Klitschko. He held the IBF title for only 10 days. Because Fury was overlooked in the world title bout with Klitschko, boxing politics caused him to be stripped of his title.[92]

After becoming heavyweight champion the national media began to pay close attention to what he had said in the past and began to print it in the national media. Such as an interview he had done with the boxing channel IFL TV where the interviewer had asked a question regarding Bermane Stiverne and Lucas Browne who had tested positive for drugs at that time. He said that performance-enhancing drugs (which he denied taking) should be permitted in boxing and other sports so that boxing would be fair for the people that didn't take drugs sarcastically.[93] He also got criticism at this time because he said the world champion heptathlete, Jessica Ennis-Hill, a fellow contender for the BBC SPOTY award, "slaps up good" and "looks nice in a dress".

Fury was placed fourth in the BBC SPOTY competition and apologised at the ceremony for his comments, saying: "I've said a lot of stuff in the past and none of it is with intentions to hurt anybody. It's all a bit of tongue in cheek and if I've said anything in the past that's hurt anybody, I apologise to anyone that's been hurt by it."[94][95]

Fury subsequently apologised, saying: "I apologise to anyone who may have taken offence at any of my comments. I said some things, which may have hurt some people, which as a Christian man is not something I would never want to do. Though it is not an excuse, sometimes the heightened media scrutiny has caused me to act out in public and then my words can get taken out of context. I mean no harm or disrespect to anyone and I know more is expected of me as an ambassador of British boxing and I promise in future to hold myself up to the highest possible standard. Anyone who knows me personally knows that I am in no way a racist or bigot and I hope the public accept my apology."[96]

In September 2015 Fury expressed a desire to run as an independent candidate to be the UK Member of Parliament for Morecambe and Lunesdale, opining that the government were too focused on immigrants and not enough on homeless people and those with drug and alcohol problems. He also suggested that Britain should leave the European Union.[97]

Fury in 2016

In April 2016 he openly spoke about the racial abuse he receives by being a Gypsy World Champion, because "nobody wants to see a gypsy do well".[98] Also in April, after the press conference, Fury said he will be relocating to the United States after his rematch with Wladimir Klitschko because he does not feel accepted in Great Britain, stating, "I am a gypsy and that's it. I will always be a gypsy, I'll never change. I will always be fat and white and that's it. I am the champion yet I am thought of as a bum."[99]

After winning the world titles, his mental health and already existing mental health issues leading up to the Klitschko fight caused Fury into a deep depression. On 4 October 4, 2016, in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine, Fury said “I’m going through a lot of personal demons, trying to shake them off, this has got nothing to do with my fighting – what I’m going through right now is my personal life. I've not been in a gym for months. I've not been training. I've been going through depression. I just don't want to live anymore, if you know what I’m saying. I've had total enough of it. They've forced me to the breaking edge. Never mind cocaine. I just didn't care. I don't want to live anymore. So cocaine is a little minor thing compared to not wanting to live anymore.I am seeing help, but they can't do nothing for me. What I've got is incurable. I don't want to live. All the money in the world, fame and glory, means nothing if you're not happy. And I ain't happy. I'm very far from it."I'm seeing psychiatrists. Everything. They say I've got a version of bipolar. I'm a manic depressive. I don't even want to wake up. I hope I die every day. And that's a bad thing to say when I've got three children and a lovely wife isn't it? But I don't want to live anymore. And if I could take me own life – and I wasn't a Christian – I'd take it in a second. I just hope someone kills me before I kill me self. I'll have to spend eternity in hell. I’ve been out drinking, Monday to Friday to Sunday, and taking cocaine. I can’t deal with it (depression) and the only thing that helps me is when I get drunk out of mind."[100][101]

On 12 October 2016, pending investigation on anti-doping cocaine use, nandrolone findings, a refusal case and been deemed medically unfit by a leading psychologist Fury took it upon himself to vacate the WBA (Unified), WBO, IBO heavyweight titles, following an emotional statement. "I won the titles in the ring and I believe that they should be lost in the ring, but I'm unable to defend at this time and I have taken the hard and emotional decision to now officially vacate my treasured world titles and wish the next in-line contenders all the very best as I now enter another big challenge in my life which I know, like against Klitschko, I will conquer."[102]

His promoter Mick Hennesy added: "Tyson will still be the lineal world heavyweight champion in everyone's eyes. He beat the most dominant champion in the modern era of boxing on an amazing night in Germany to earn that accolade and that will never change. Whilst it's heartbreaking to see Tyson vacate the world titles that he worked so long and hard for all his life, what's paramount now is that he receives the medical treatment along with the love of his family and friends and the support of the boxing world to make a full recovery." .[102] Fury's decision was based on not having himself under constant pressure and allowing him time to recover, get professional medical help and spend time with his family.On the 13th October, the British Boxing Board of Control decided to suspend Fury's boxing licence.

13 October, the British Boxing Board of Control decided to suspend Fury's boxing licence. A date in November was set for the appeal hearing.[103][104] On 1 February 2018, Fury was stripped of The Ring magazine's heavyweight championship.[105]

Issues with UKAD and BBBofC

Robert Smith, BBBofC general secretary, said the case was 'complex' and it had been adjourned. He told Sky Sports, "It's been adjourned to carry on later on. It's still ongoing and when they are in a position to give us any more information, they will. This is one of those legal cases where anything legal goes a long time. I'm not surprised, it's not unusual, it's obviously a complex case. I will expect a decision when I'm given it."[106] In September 2017, Fury challenged UK Anti-Doping to give him a reply, to either ban him or give back his boxing licence. He believed he was being treated unfairly as it had taken this long for them to reply, stating that usually the problem would be dealt within a matter of months. Fury tweeted, "How long must I be held up and kept out of action? It's been 15 months since I've been under investigation, you're keeping an innocent man from fulfilling his destiny and from providing for his family." UKAD did state there was no particular timescale involved.[107] UKAD denied any claims that they were prolonging the hearing. Instead they said they were trying to resolve the matter as soon as possible.[108]

Fury at Place Bell, Laval Quebec, Canada in 2017

On 8 November 2017, BBC Sport reported that a National Anti-Doping Panel hearing was due to take place in December. Due to the legal battle between Fury and UKad, it was believed that UKad could potentially become insolvent or would need a government bail out. UKad reportedly have an annual budget of £8 million. The fact that Fury had not fought for two years would have caused potential loss of earnings, possibly over £10 million. UKad asked the government if they could underwrite the case.[109] On 23 November, according to Robert Smith of the BBBofC, a hearing was set for a date in December 2017.[110] On 25 November 2017, Fury announced his comeback after signing with managerial group MTK Global.[citation needed] A hearing start date of 11 December was set, with a potential outcome being Fury facing a four-year ban.[111] Fury did not turn up to the hearing and had reporters waiting outside the location for six hours before finally leaving. No comments were made with regard to the no-show. Fury was however posting on his Instagram page at the time.[112] Mick Hennessy later stated that Fury was not required at the hearing.[113] On 7 February 2018, UKAD revealed they spent nearly £600,000, which works out at 10% of their annual budget, on the Fury case. The accurate figure of £585,659 was broken down. £576,587 was paid to London law firm Bird & Bird, barrister fees came to £1,130 and around £8,000 was paid for laboratory work. UKAD believed they could regain £250,000 through legal insurance,.[114][115][116][117] In December 2016, Fury's uncle Peter announced that Fury would be returning around spring in 2017 and would aim for a fight against WBC champion Deontay Wilder, who himself will take part in a voluntary defence in February. On 23 December, Fury tweeted that he was back in training ahead of a ring return around April or May 2017. His tweet read, "I've had a nightmare 2016, done a lot of stuff I'm not proud of, but my promise to you is I'll return in 2017."[118][119]

On 6 March 2017, Fury tweeted that his return fight would take place on 13 May 2017 and he was speaking to Frank Warren about possible opponents.[120][121] The date set for the return would mean Fury would be fighting on the undercard of Josh Warrington defending his WBC International featherweight title against Kiko Martinez at the First Direct Arena in Leeds.[122] Hours after Fury announced a comeback date, the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBofC) publicly announced that Fury was still suspended and would not be fighting in May. This was confirmed by their general secretary Robert Smith. He also mentioned that there had been no contact from Fury or his representatives since the ban started.[123][124] Fury later mentioned he would get a licence through Boxing Union of Ireland, although they stated no application had been received.[citation needed]

Promoter Frank Warren told Reuters on 7 March, "I want to see him back in the ring as soon as possible but before that happens he's got a couple of issues to sort out. I've got a lot of time for him ... I'd like to be involved in moving forward and getting him back to where he should be, which is being the number one heavyweight." He said that there would be a hearing in early May. A court hearing with UKAD was set for 8 May 2017.[125][126] On 25 April, Fury advised that he would make his in-ring return on the undercard of Billy Joe Saunders' world middleweight title defence against Avtandil Khurtsidze on 8 July in London.[127]

On 12 December, UKAD issued a statement,

Taking into account the delays in results management that meant charges were not brought in respect of the nandrolone findings until June 2016, and the provisional suspensions that Tyson and Hughie Fury have already effectively served, the two year period of ineligibility is backdated to 13 December 2015, and therefore expires at midnight on 12 December 2017.

— UKAD

The BBBofC also agreed on the outcome and it was said that Fury was free to box again. They also stated they would consider the renewal of Fury's boxing licence in January 2018.[128] In relation to the news, Fury wrote on Twitter, "Guess who's back?"[129][130][131]

Comeback trail

On 10 January 2018, Fury made an announcement through his Twitter account stating he would be re-applying for his boxing licence through the British Boxing Board of Control.[132] An interview took place between Fury and BBBofC on 19 January, where the latter agreed to re-instate Fury's as long as he sent them up-to-date medical records after visiting a psychologist he was deemed medically fit.[133][134] Fury said a big motivation on his Return was Deontay Wilder. "He said I couldn't do it, he said definitely not Tyson Fury. He's done.".[135] At a press conference in London on 12 April 2018, Fury announced he had signed a multi-deal with Frank Warren's Queensberry Promotions. He stated that he intended to fight at least three times before 2019, starting on 9 June at the Manchester Arena in Manchester. This would make Fury's first time fighting at the arena and his first fight in Manchester since 2011.[136][137] After weeks of speculation, it was confirmed the fight would be shown exclusively on BT Sport.[138] On 20 May, 39 year old Albanian boxer Sefer Seferi (23-1, 21 KOs) was announced as Fury's opponent in a 10-round bout. Seferi was a career cruiserweight, having fought once at heavyweight losing to Manuel Charr in 2016.[139][140][141] Fury weighed 276 pounds at the weigh-in, 66 pounds heavier than Seferi. It was said that Fury had lost 112 pounds for the fight. Fury won the fight after Seferi quit on his stool after round 4.[142][143] The opening couple of rounds had little to no action as Fury was showboating. He was then warned by referee Phil Edwards in round 2. A brawl also broke out in the crowd during the fight, but order was restored before the fight came to an end. Fury began to unload heavy shots in round 4 and it appeared many of the shots landed had hurt Seferi, hence why he retired on his stool.[144][145] After the fight, Warren confirmed Fury would next return on the Carl Frampton undercard on 18 August at Windsor Park in Belfast. It was revealed the fight, which aired exclusively on BT Sport 1, peaked at 814,000 live viewers.[146]

On 12 July 2018, it was announced that Fury would fight former two-time world title challenger Francesco Pianeta (35-4-1, 21 KOs) on 18 August.[147] Fury weighed in at 258 pounds, 18 pounds lighter than he weighed against Seferi. Pianeta came in at 254.7 pounds.[148] On 30 July, it was reported that there was ongoing negotiations for a fight to take place in either November or December 2018 between Fury and WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder (40-0, 39 KOs).[149] On 31 July, Fury stated the fight against Wilder was 99% a done deal, with only a location and date to be confirmed. Fury also had to come through in his bout against Pianeta.[150] Wilder was scheduled to be in Belfast to further promote the fight.[151] Fury went the much-needed 10 round distance, defeating Pianeta via a points decision. Referee Steve Gray scored the fight 100–90 in favour or Fury.[152][153] Fury later revealed he had no intention of trying to end the fight early. He said, "I think it was a calculated boxing performance. I got 10 rounds with a very tough man under my belt. I was working on my jab, slipping his punches. I thought that was a step up with the opponent and display. I needed the rounds, and I had plenty left in the tank."[154] According to CompuBox, Fury landed 107 of 620 punches thrown (17%). This included 100 power punches landed of 226 thrown (44%). Pianeta landed only 37 of his 228 punches thrown (16%).[155]

During the post-fight interviews, promoter Warren confirmed the Fury vs. Wilder fight was on. The fight would take place in either Las Vegas or New York in November 2018. The fight would be aired on PPV in the United States on Showtime and in the UK on BT Sports Box Office.[156] Talking about how the fight came together, Fury said, "We have two men who will fight anyone. This man has been trying to make a fight with another chump. They called, I answered. I said: 'Send me the contract.' They sent it. I said 'yes'."[157] Warren later told BBC Radio 5 live, "[It's a] 50–50 [purse split], quick and smooth negotiations. He was the world heavyweight champion. He's undefeated. [Wilder and his team] understand that. All of the terms are agreed." By the end of August, contracts for the fight to take place had been signed.[158]

WBC heavyweight championship

On 22 September, both fighters confirmed they had signed the contract and the fight would take place on 1 December 2018.[159][160] According to the California State Athletic Commission, Wllder would earn a guaranteed base purse of $4 million and Fury would take home a guaranteed purse of $3 million.[161] Despite Frank Warren's original claim that the revenue would be split 50-50, it was revealed that Wilder could make $14 million (£10.94 million) and Fury would earn around $10.25 million (£8 million). Both boxers would see this increase to their base purses after receiving their percentages from pay-per-view revenue.[162] The weigh-in took place on November 30, on a made platform outside the Los Angeles Convention Center. Fury stepped on the scale first and weighed in at 256½ pounds, his lightest since his comeback following his lay off. The weight was only 2 pounds less than he weighed in August 2018 against Francisco Pianeta, however, he looked more slim and lean. Wilder was next to step on and came in at 212½ pounds, his lowest since his debut in 2008 when he weighed 207¼ pounds. For his last bout, Wilder weighed 214 pounds, however, it was cited that Wilder suffered from an illness during his training camp.[163]

In front of a noisy crowd of 17,698 at the Staples Center, Wilder and Fury fought a 12-round split decision draw, meaning Wilder retained his WBC title. Mexican judge Alejandro Rochin scored the fight 115–111 for Wilder, Canadian judge Robert Tapper had it 114–112 for Fury and British judge Phil Edwards scored it a 113–113 draw.[164] The crowd booed at the decision with many believing Fury did enough to dethrone Wilder. Some fans and media outlets had Wilder the comfortable winner claiming Fury did not do enough in most rounds to win the fight. Fury, using his unorthodox stance, spent much of the fight using upper and lower-body movement to avoid Wilder big shots and stay out of range. There was not much action in round 1 as both boxers used the round to feel each other out. Wilder tried to trap Fury into the corner, but Fury made Wilder miss most of his big swings. In round 4, Wilder bloodied Fury's nose with his stiff jabs, but was unable to follow up on the attacks. In round 6, Fury switched to southpaw stance and had some success backing Wilder against the ropes and at the same time stayed cautious of Wilder's power. Wilder managed to land a few jabs towards the end of the round. In round 7, after trading jabs, which saw Fury come out on top, Fury landed a counter right hand, then quickly tied Wilder up before he could throw anything back. Round 8 saw back and forth action with both trying to land. Wilder threw a lot of power shots which seemingly missed wide with Fury clearly seeing them coming. Wilder finished strong landed a right, left combination just before the bell. In round 9, Wilder finally dropped Fury with a short left hook followed by an overhand right. Fury beat referee Jack Reiss’ count and survived the round. Using up so much energy trying to finish Fury in round 9, Wilder looked fatigued in round 10. This came to as an advantage for Fury as he landed two right hands. Fury also took advantage in round 11, landing enough shots and avoided anything Wilder could throw. In round 12, Wilder landed a right-left combination which put Fury down hard on his back. The crowd, commentary team and Wilder believed the fight was over. Reiss looked at Fury on the canvas and began giving him a count. To everyone's surprise, Fury beat the count. Reiss made Fury walk towards him and called for the action to continue. Wilder, fatigued again, was unable to land another power shot and Fury landed some right hands to finish the round and the fight on his feet. Both boxers embraced in a hug after the final bell sounded.[165][166][167]

Fury at a press conference in Las Vegas in 2019

After the fight, both men stood in the ring and spoke to Jim Gray. Wilder felt he had done enough to win the fight, stating, "I think with the two knockdowns, I definitely won the fight. We poured our hearts out tonight. We're both warriors. I rushed my punches. I didn't sit still. I was too hesitant. I started overthrowing the right hand, and I just couldn't adjust. I was rushing my punches. That's something I usually don't do. I really wanted to get him out of there, give the fans what they want to see." Fury said, "We're on away soil. I got knocked down twice, but I still believe I won that fight. I'm being a total professional here. God bless America. The 'Gypsy King' has returned. That man is a fearsome puncher, and I was able to avoid that. The world knows I won the fight. I hope I did you all proud after nearly three years out of the ring. I showed good heart to get up. I came here tonight, and I fought my heart out."[168] Wilder and Fury both claimed to be the best heavyweights in the world and both called out unified world champion Anthony Joshua. Fury shouted, “Chicken! Chicken! Joshua, where are you?” Wilder then agreed to state the two best heavyweights got into the ring and fought.[169]

According to CompuBox statistics, Wilder landed 71 punches of 430 thrown (17%), and Fury landed 84 of his 327 thrown (26%). Wilder was much less accurate in this fight than he usually had been in previous fights. Fury out-landed Wilder in 9 out of the 12 rounds. Both Wilder and Fury only landed double digits in 4 separate rounds.[170]

The event was both a critical and a commercial success. The fight reportedly sold approximately 325,000 pay-per-view buys on Showtime in the United States, grossing around $24 million, making it the most lucrative heavyweight fight in the country since 2003.[171][172][173] Showtime's delayed broadcast a week later drew an average 488,000 viewers and peaked at 590,000 viewers.[171]

Personal life

Fury was born and raised in Wythenshawe, Manchester, England and currently resides in Morecambe, Lancashire, England. He met his wife Paris when she was 15 years old. Like Fury, Paris is a practising Catholic and raised in a gypsy family. They waited a year until getting together and married in 2009. The couple have since had five children together.[174][175][176] He is currently an Ambassador for the former British world champion Frank Bruno's Mental health charity, The Frank Bruno Foundation.[177]

Professional boxing record

Professional record summary
29 fights 28 wins 0 losses
By knockout 20 0
By decision 8 0
Draws 1
No. Result Record Opponent Type Round, time Date Location Notes
29 Win 28–0–1 Germany Tom Schwarz TKO 2 (12), 2:54 15 Jun 2019 United States MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, US
28 Draw 27–0–1 United States Deontay Wilder SD 12 1 Dec 2018 United States Staples Center, Los Angeles, California, US For WBC heavyweight title
27 Win 27–0 Italy Francesco Pianeta PTS 10 18 Aug 2018 United Kingdom Windsor Park, Belfast, Northern Ireland
26 Win 26–0 Albania Sefer Seferi RTD 4 (10), 3:00 9 Jun 2018 United Kingdom Manchester Arena, Manchester, England
25 Win 25–0 Ukraine Wladimir Klitschko UD 12 28 Nov 2015 Germany Esprit Arena, Düsseldorf, Germany Won WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring, and lineal heavyweight titles
24 Win 24–0 Romania Christian Hammer RTD 8 (12), 3:00 28 Feb 2015 United Kingdom The O2 Arena, London, England Retained WBO International heavyweight title
23 Win 23–0 United Kingdom Dereck Chisora RTD 10 (12), 3:00 29 Nov 2014 United Kingdom ExCeL, London, England Won European, WBO International, and vacant British heavyweight titles
22 Win 22–0 United States Joey Abell TKO 4 (10), 1:48 15 Feb 2014 United Kingdom Copper Box Arena, London, England
21 Win 21–0 United States Steve Cunningham KO 7 (12), 2:55 20 Apr 2013 United States The Theater at Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, US
20 Win 20–0 United States Kevin Johnson UD 12 1 Dec 2012 United Kingdom Odyssey Arena, Belfast, Northern Ireland
19 Win 19–0 United States Vinny Maddalone TKO 5 (12), 1:35 7 Jul 2012 United Kingdom Hand Arena, Clevedon, England Won vacant WBO Inter-Continental heavyweight title
18 Win 18–0 United Kingdom Martin Rogan TKO 5 (12), 3:00 14 Apr 2012 United Kingdom Odyssey Arena, Belfast, Northern Ireland Won vacant Irish heavyweight title
17 Win 17–0 Canada Neven Pajkic TKO 3 (12), 2:44 12 Nov 2011 United Kingdom EventCity, Manchester, England Retained Commonwealth heavyweight title
16 Win 16–0 United States Nicolai Firtha TKO 5 (12), 2:19 18 Sep 2011 United Kingdom King's Hall, Belfast, Northern Ireland
15 Win 15–0 United Kingdom Dereck Chisora UD 12 23 Jul 2011 United Kingdom Wembley Arena, London, England Won British and Commonwealth heavyweight titles
14 Win 14–0 Brazil Marcelo Luiz Nascimento KO 5 (10), 2:48 19 Feb 2011 United Kingdom Wembley Arena, London, England
13 Win 13–0 United States Zack Page UD 8 19 Dec 2010 Canada Colisée Pepsi, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada
12 Win 12–0 United States Rich Power PTS 8 10 Sep 2010 United Kingdom York Hall, London, England
11 Win 11–0 United Kingdom John McDermott TKO 9 (12), 1:08 25 Jun 2010 United Kingdom Brentwood Centre Arena, Brentwood, England Won vacant English heavyweight title
10 Win 10–0 Germany Hans-Joerg Blasko TKO 1 (8), 2:14 5 Mar 2010 United Kingdom Leisure Centre, Huddersfield, England
9 Win 9–0 Czech Republic Tomas Mrazek PTS 6 26 Sep 2009 Republic of Ireland The O2, Dublin, Ireland
8 Win 8–0 United Kingdom John McDermott PTS 10 11 Sep 2009 United Kingdom Brentwood Centre Arena, Brentwood, England Won English heavyweight title
7 Win 7–0 Latvia Aleksandrs Selezens TKO 3 (6), 0:48 18 Jul 2009 United Kingdom York Hall, London, England
6 Win 6–0 United Kingdom Scott Belshaw TKO 2 (8), 0:52 23 May 2009 United Kingdom Colosseum, Watford, England
5 Win 5–0 United Kingdom Matthew Ellis KO 1 (6), 0:48 11 Apr 2009 United Kingdom York Hall, London, England
4 Win 4–0 United Kingdom Lee Swaby TKO 4 (6), 3:00 14 Mar 2009 United Kingdom Aston Events Centre, Birmingham, England
3 Win 3–0 Russia Daniil Peretyatko TKO 2 (6), 3:00 28 Feb 2009 United Kingdom Showground, Norwich, England
2 Win 2–0 Germany Marcel Zeller TKO 3 (6), 2:50 17 Jan 2009 United Kingdom DW Stadium, Wigan, England
1 Win 1–0 Hungary Béla Gyöngyösi TKO 1 (6), 2:14 6 Dec 2008 United Kingdom National Ice Centre, Nottingham, England

See also

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External links

Sporting positions
Amateur boxing titles
Previous:
David Price
ABA super-heavyweight champion
2008
Next:
Simon Vallily
Regional boxing titles
Preceded by
John McDermott
English heavyweight champion
11 September 2009 – March 2010
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Himself
Vacant
Title last held by
Himself
English heavyweight champion
25 June 2010 – July 2011
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
David Price
Preceded by
Dereck Chisora
British heavyweight champion
23 July 2011 – 8 February 2012
Vacated
Commonwealth heavyweight champion
23 July 2011 – 8 February 2012
Vacated
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Title last held by
Coleman Barrett
Irish heavyweight champion
14 April 2012 – ?
Vacated
Vacant
Vacant
Title last held by
Robert Helenius
WBO Inter-Continental
heavyweight champion

7 July 2012 – July 2013
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Andy Ruiz
Preceded by
Dereck Chisora
European heavyweight champion
29 November 2014 – July 2015
Vacated
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Title next held by
Erkan Teper
Vacant
Title last held by
David Price
British heavyweight champion
29 November 2014 – 17 April 2015
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Anthony Joshua
Preceded by
Dereck Chisora
WBO International
heavyweight champion

29 November 2014 – 28 November 2015
Won world title
Vacant
Title next held by
Alexander Povetkin
Minor world boxing titles
Preceded by
Wladimir Klitschko
IBO heavyweight champion
28 November 2015 – 12 October 2016
Retired
Vacant
Title next held by
Anthony Joshua
Major world boxing titles
Preceded by
Wladimir Klitschko
WBA heavyweight champion
Unified title

28 November 2015 – 12 October 2016
Super title until 10 December 2015
Retired
Vacant
Title next held by
Anthony Joshua
as Super champion
IBF heavyweight champion
28 November 2015 – 8 December 2015
Stripped
Vacant
Title next held by
Charles Martin
WBO heavyweight champion
28 November 2015 – 12 October 2016
Retired
Vacant
Title next held by
Joseph Parker
The Ring heavyweight champion
28 November 2015 – 1 February 2018
Stripped
Vacant
Lineal heavyweight champion
28 November 2015 – 12 October 2016
Retired
Awards
Previous:
Sergey Kovalev
The Ring Fighter of the Year
2015
Next:
Carl Frampton
Previous:
Chris Algieri
UD12 Ruslan Provodnikov
The Ring Upset of the Year
UD12 Wladimir Klitschko

2015
Next:
Joe Smith Jr.
TKO1 Andrzej Fonfara
Previous:
Sadam Ali
The Ring Comeback of the Year
2018
Incumbent
Previous:
Dominic Breazeale vs.
Izu Ugonoh
Round 3
The Ring Round of the Year
vs. Deontay Wilder
Round 12

2018
Previous:
John Molina Jr. vs.
Ivan Redkach
Round 3
PBC Round of the Year
vs. Deontay Wilder
Round 12

2018