Boxing

Mike Tyson vs Lennox Lewis: What we know about September fight

Boxing legends Mike Tyson and Lennox Lewis are set to lace up the gloves in a rematch this September — 19 years after their first fight.

Tyson made the blockbuster announcement that the pair, with a combined age of 109, will stand toe-to-toe again.

What we know about September bout

The 54-year-old American was on the hunt for an opponent after the success of his return to the sport in an exhibition bout against Roy Jones Jr last year.

Tyson had been set for a third fight with rival Evander Holyfield in Miami this May, before the deal fell apart as the veterans failed to agree on money.

But now Tyson has confirmed he will face Lewis, 55, in September, having lost to the Brit earlier in his career.

He simply told TMZ: “I’m gonna fight Lennox Lewis. September.”

Mike Tyson has moved on from Evander Holyfield and wants to fight Lennox Lewis. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)Source:Getty Images

Lewis retired after beating Vitali Klitschko in 2003 but recently admitted he could stage a sensational comeback.

Earlier this year, Lewis revealed he was keen to take on Tyson again having watched his comeback to the ring.

“If the public wanted it then we would probably talk,” he told TMZ.

“I don’t know. I don’t really have nothing pushing me in the ring right now.

“People would love to see that fight but I don’t know.”

Their wild rivalry which included leg bite

In 2002, Lewis defeated the American with an eighth-round stoppage in Memphis to defend his world titles.

Tyson at the time had not lost since 1997, when he was disqualified for biting Evander Holyfield’s ear.

Lewis was the unified heavyweight king and golden boy of the division.

It was one of the biggest heavyweight contests in history and the build-up was filled with bad blood.

Two years before they’d finally enter the ring, Tyson famously called out Lewis after finishing Lou Savarese in 38 seconds.

Mike Tyson instigates a brawl with Lennox Lewis at a news conference to promote their heavyweight title fight.Source:AP

“I’m the best ever. I’m the most brutal and vicious, and most ruthless champion there’s ever been,” he said.

“There’s no one can stop me. Lennox is a conqueror? No, I’m Alexander (the Great). He’s no Alexander. I’m the best ever.

“There’s never been anybody as ruthless. I’m Sonny Liston. I’m Jack Dempsey. There’s no one like me. I’m from their cloth. There’s no one that can match me.

“My style is impetuous, my defence is impregnable, and I’m just ferocious. I want your heart. I want to eat his children.”

There was also chaos at a standard pre-fight face-off when all hell broke loose as Tyson marched toward Lewis and swung a punch at his bodyguard.

Lewis later recalled: “All of a sudden I saw him take his hat off, throw it on the ground and start marching towards me.

“Boom. I was on it – the first three punches were mine and the first bite was his.”

Tyson was forced to pay Lewis around $360,000 for biting his leg, and the brawl almost saw the mega-fight cancelled altogether.

Lennox Lewis was too powerful for Mike Tyson. (AP PicLaura/Rauch)Source:AP

Who had the better career and who will this time

The two heavyweights are rightly regarded as boxing royalty, but neither have an unblemished record.

Tyson suffered six defeats in his 56-fight record, with Lewis losing two of his 44.

Forty-four of Tyson’s 50 wins came by way of KO, with Lewis amassing 32 KOs from 41 wins.

Lewis has one draw to his name — that came against Holyfield in 1999.

The Brit has a huge size and reach advantage when the two fight. Tyson is 178cm with a 180cm reach, while Lewis is 195cm with a 213cm reach.

But Tyson is likely to be in better shape — he has shared intense workout and sparring sessions on his social media pages over the last year.

— The Sun

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