By Sean Crose
The long anticipated bout for the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world is now reportedly might go down at London’s Wembley Stadium on the 29th of April. The Daily Mail is reporting that “Fury himself is urging rival title holder Oleksandr Usyk to agree the London date, as oil-rich bidders Saudi Arabia are unable to confirm that construction of their new stadium in Jeddah can be completed in time.” Of course, this being boxing, nothing can be guaranteed until the sound of the opening bell. A fight in London, however, would give England’s Fury a distinct “hometown” advantage over the Ukraine’s Usyk.
The clock is now ticking on a fight that’s been said to go down in the first part 2023. Bouts the size of Fury-Usyk take a while to construct, after all. There’s a million small details to attend to, plus the fighters themselves need adequate time to prepare. “Boxing’s sanctioning bodies,” writes the Daily Mail, “the WBC in Fury’s case and the WBA, IBF and WBO whose belts Usyk holds – will not wait forever for mandatory defenses of their titles against other leading contenders.” Suffice to say, the fight, should it fall through, would be the third, or perhaps even the fourth, major contest to not see the light of day in the past several months.
A potential heavyweight showdown being Fury and Anthony Joshua was scrapped in the later portion of 2022, as was a way too long hoped for throwdown between welterweight kingpins Terence Crawford and Errol Spence. Aside from negotiations for the hoped for Fury-Usyk fight dragging along, negotiations for a Gervonta Davis-Ryan Garcia superbout are still apparently clumping forward – or not. It’s a tough time for fans of the sweet science, no doubt, as the message being delivered is that the best simply may not fight the best at this point in the sport’s history.
With all that being said, it’s doubtful that either Fury or Usyk would be willing to let this opportunity simply slide by the wayside without doing everything possible to make it happen. There hasn’t been an undisputed heavyweight champion since the era of Lennox Lewis, which means it’s long past time for their to be an unquestioned heavyweight king. With Fury and Usyk both being undefeated and highly skilled, there’s no legitimate reason, really, why the matchup can’t somehow be made in the near future. The heavyweight division actually depends on it.
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