Tyson Fury appears to have confirmed his WBC heavyweight title showdown against Dillian Whyte.
After a complicated week for boxing’s blue-riband division, two huge fights are beginning to shift into focus with Fury seemingly set to defend his title against mandatory challenger Whyte.
IBF, WBO and WBA champion Oleksandr Usyk is now likely to take on Anthony Joshua, who last year activated a rematch clause in his bid to reclaim the world titles he lost last September.
While a deal is still to be agreed, Fury now appears focused on Whyte, sharing mock-up fight poster of the two in Instagram.
Fury had hoped to secure a unification showdown with Usyk with Joshua offered a huge step-aside offer to allow that fight to happen first.
Joshua strongly denied ‘bulls**t suggestions’ the deal had been accepted, however. Comments made by Fury on Instagram on Wednesday also suggested that offer was turned down.
‘Eddie Hearn and Anthony Joshua have got to be the worst-damn businessmen in history. Today they lost $90 million!’ he said.
Offering his side of the convoluted story, Hearn has accused Fury of effectively ducking Usyk, insisting ‘The Gypsy King’ was really chasing ‘a little easy one in March’ rather than a meeting with the undefeated Ukrainian.
Hearn told iFL TV: ‘The reality of the situation is; we would be willing to see a long-form agreement with a plan for AJ.
‘But we’re not even at that stage. Tyson Fury had the opportunity to discuss – Fury doesn’t want to fight Usyk, in my opinion.
‘Because he had the opportunity to do it through these discussions and really, when it came down to it, he really don’t want to.
‘What Fury wants to do is have a little easy one in March, that’s what he really wants to do.
‘Now, he’s going to have to fight Dillian Whyte, and by the way, after all of this kerfuffle, he’ll get beat by Dillian Whyte, he’ll get knocked out by Dillian Whyte.
‘But the reality is, when it really came down to it, he never wanted to fight Oleksandr Usyk.
‘Because he could’ve gone straight into a fight with Oleksandr Usyk, but he didn’t want to go straight into a fight with Oleksandr Usyk.
‘But you won’t ever hear that and the public won’t ever hear that. You’ll just hear Fury on Instagram, screaming and shouting with smoking mirrors.’
Fury and Whyte had until 6pm tonight [Wednesday 26 January] to privately agree to their mandated WBC title showdown. That free negotiation period was extended by 48 hours and if no deal is reached purse bids will be introduced.
Purse bids mean any promoter can enter the negotiations to finance and stage the fight.
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