Jannah Theme License is not validated, Go to the theme options page to validate the license, You need a single license for each domain name.
BusinessUSA

Tyson Fury crashed into Oleksandr Usyk’s personification of Ukraine’s battlefield challenge as he returned from the point of no return, writes JEFF POWELL

The road to undisputed ended for the Gypsy King in a head-on collision with Olexander Usyk’s singular personification of Ukraine’s battlefield challenge.

A Fight For Any Century ended in as close a defeat for Tyson Fury as it is possible for three judges to score.

At the end of the most breathtaking fight of two halves, the score was 114-113 on two maps and 115-112 on the other. None of these heroes deserved to lose but it was to Fury’s despair that two of them favored the man returning from the point of no return. There will be another return to the ring.

A rematch is in the contract. This is inevitable in public demand. Never has a second edition been so necessary. This will delight us all again in October.

At the climax of this first fight, which will echo through the halls of fame for as long as two men are willing to raise a fist at each other, boxing finally delivered not only a night of violent splendor but the new champion of the undisputed heavyweight world for which boxing has been waiting for 25 years.

Oleksandr Usyk beat Tyson Fury by the narrowest of margins to become undisputed heavyweight champion

Oleksandr Usyk beat Tyson Fury by the narrowest of margins to become undisputed heavyweight champion

Fury was devastated at the final bell after losing his unbeaten record in Riyadh

Fury was devastated at the final bell after losing his unbeaten record in Riyadh

The ninth round proved decisive as Usyk pounded Fury around the ring, forcing the referee to administer a count after the ropes held Fury in place.

The ninth round proved decisive as Usyk pounded Fury around the ring, forcing the referee to administer a count after the ropes held Fury in place.

Usyk had to dig really deep after a rough start to the fight, but he came back strong in the second half of the fight.

Usyk had to dig really deep after a rough start to the fight, but he came back strong in the second half of the fight.

The long reign of Lennox Lewis is over, but it was not an Englishman hungry for succession who claimed his throne. This is a man who refused to lose for his country.

Usyk became famous by brandishing this yellow and blue flag, thanks to the ninth round. His comeback after Fury’s total domination in the first six rounds consisted of tipping him so close to a knockout that he was spared by the American referee giving him a standing count because the ropes were holding him back. The count was eight, the score was ninth, 8 to 10 to Fury.

Fury had dispatched the technical maestro and taunted him for six rounds. Usyk simply refused to concede his will or his body. As if to change the time, he struck Fury from them.

He was tied at the bottom of the eleventh. Fury staggered out of the fog to fight last. If the judges agreed with my score, it would have been a draw. No one would have liked that, but it would have seemed right. But Fury’s unbeaten record is gone. Not the Usyks.

How the fight day went

The day of the fight dawned with an embarrassment. Usyk’s official weight has been revised down by ten pounds.

Tipsters and bettors went into overdrive. So it wouldn’t be slowed down?

But would it be even easier for Fury to move?

Was it all mind games? A conspiracy even?

Behave. In all probability, this was a mistake. Legendary ring announcer Michael ‘Rumble’ Buffer is now 79 years old. Could he have heard 223 books as 233? Every chance.

Usyk's weight was misread Friday night, which only became clear Saturday morning

Usyk’s weight was misread Friday night, which only became clear Saturday morning

It was a rare mistake on Michael Buffer's part and left fans wondering how Usyk would actually approach the fight.

It was a rare mistake on Michael Buffer’s part and left fans wondering how Usyk would actually approach the fight.

If Tyson was taken aback by this, he is not the Fury we know. And some of us like it. Either way, as he told us at the weigh-in, it’s Usyk’s heart he’s going to attack. Not his muscles.

Not that the Saudi royal rulers would have been too happy. Riyadh, as the new capital of heavyweight boxing, is still learning the ropes.

The good people here are still being introduced to the delights of boxing.

This fight would have sold out Wembley Stadium twice. Tickets for Kingdom Arena were around $20. To be on the verge of fulfilling it would have required a few invitations that would have been insulting to refuse.

But for a few thousand of Fury’s traveling companions, the atmosphere might have been nothing more than curiosity.

Then again, without Saudi wealth, it is quite possible that none of us would have witnessed this fight. Rough purses of £100m for Fury and £35m for Usyk were too good to turn down.

Unfazed, the undefeated duo prepares. The first sighting of Usyk on the giant screen showed him leaving the air-conditioned arena to warm up in the evening heat in a courtyard.

He came to join the frightened celebrities. They included heavyweight royalty Lewis, Holyfield, Larry Holmes, David Haye and Anthony Joshua.

Anthony Joshua (left) and Cristiano Ronaldo (right) watched from ringside

Anthony Joshua (left) and Cristiano Ronaldo (right) watched from ringside

Lennox Lewis (left) and Evander Holyfield (right) were also in attendance

Lennox Lewis (left) and Evander Holyfield (right) were also in attendance

Usyk took to the ring in a historic military commander's uniform

Usyk took to the ring in a historic military commander’s uniform

Fury danced his way to the ring, enjoying the adulation of the crowd.

Fury danced his way to the ring, enjoying the adulation of the crowd.

Oh and by the way, Cristiano Ronaldo, who earns less in a year playing football here than Fury, is banking on this one-night job.

A superb sound, light and fire show as well as a dramatic rock performance energized the room.

Uasyk walked sternly and loudly, dressed in the historical uniform of a military commander. Fury came dressed, ready for work, but expending energy in a display of hyper shadow boxing and prancing.

These two religious people crossed themselves several times. Let the battle begin.

JEFF POWELL DASH CARD

Round 1 – Fury took care of the early exchanges with his telescopic left jab. He even demonstrated in the corner after avoiding an Usyk advance and danced clearly after being cut.

Fury 10-9 Usyk

Round 2 – Usyk opened the second with a crisp one-two. Fury came back to the jab and took the second despite being hit just before the bell.

Fury 10-9 Usyk

Round 3 – Fury has been restored to his prime. Yank. Fluid of movement. Too big to catch with anything hurtful.

Fury 10-9 Usyk

Round 4 – Fury’s command was such that he dispatched the Master Technician.

Fury 10-9 Usyk

Fury appeared in charge from the start and even produced some showboating in the corner

Fury appeared in charge from the start and even produced some showboating in the corner

Round 5 – Fury checked Usyk’s alleged weakness in the body and was warned for a low blow as Usyk complained. But the Ukrainian’s biggest problem was a cut over his right eye, which may have been caused by a clash of heads in the previous round.

Fury 10-9 Usyk

Round 6 – The crowd was ready for Usyk to take the fight, but he was overwhelmed. This was becoming a phenomenal performance from the Gypsy King. He attacked his man at will and taunted him into the bargain.

Fury 10-9 Usyk

Round 7 – Halfway there and Usyk has yet to win a round. He needed it now to not be beyond recovering the points and stole this one with a powerful finish after catching Fury playing.

Fury 9-10 Usyk

Round 8 – Could Usyk get back in there. A huge effort on his part is rewarded with several left hooks that allow Fury to hold and lean for the first time 9-10.

Fury 9-10 Usyk

Round 9 – Amazing effort from Usyk. Fury staggers from those huge lefts, collapses against the ropes and is saved by a standing eight count, then the bell.

Fury 8-10 Usyk

Usyk turned the fight in his favor with a huge left hand that rocked Fury hard

Usyk turned the fight in his favor with a huge left hand that rocked Fury hard

Round 10 – Fury boxes on the fumes. Usyk is now doing the taunting.

Fury 9-10 Usyk

Round 11 – What a fight in two halves. Fury’s power left his punches. He’s still hanging on. They are now incredibly level on my map before the last one.

Fury 9-10 Usyk

Round 12 – Fury makes his last fight. His rights are equal to Usyk’s lefts. The last one is even. If the judges agree…it’s a draw.

Fury 10-10 Usyk

Final verdict: Fury 114-114 Usyk

dailymail us

Back to top button