Oleksandr Usyk has got his fight — but it’s a little bit further down the road than he would have liked.
According to a report by ESPN late on Tuesday, the Fury vs. Usyk heavyweight title unification fight originally tentatively scheduled for December 23 will now take place in February at a date yet-to-be-confirmed. This follows Fury’s controversial split decision win against Francis Ngannou in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia during which the WBC heavyweight champion was dropped in the third round before employing a defensive strategy to outpoint the former UFC champ in a razor-thin fight.
Fury sustained a small cut to his forehead and heavy bruising around each eye, prompting immediate speculation that the December 23 date was unrealistic, despite Usyk campaigning for it in the aftermath of the Ngannou fight. Days prior, Fury had suggested that he would launch legal action against the Ukrainian fighter if he declared himself unavailable for the pre-Christmas date. In an interview on Sunday, Fury told fans that they would ‘see him next year’.
The bout, when it goes down, is set to unify all the major titles in boxing’s heavyweight fold for the first time in two decades. It is yet to be confirmed where the fight will take place but Saudi Arabia is presently at the top of the line, with the state’s ‘Riyadh Season’ extending until March.