Oleksandr Usyk’s promoter believes Tyson Fury’s struggles with Francis Ngannou proved that Fury cannot handle southpaws.
Usyk and his promoter Alex Krassyuk were present in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to watch Fury unexpectedly get knocked down and then labour to a controversial split-decision victory.
It is widely expected that the sought-after undisputed world heavyweight title fight between Fury and Usyk will follow – Krassyuk and Usyk insist it must happen on December 23; Fury’s promoter Frank Warren that it will be in early 2024 – but whenever it is finally scheduled for Krassyuk expects Fury to struggle again.
The 36-year-old Usyk is not only as widely recognised as Fury as one of the world’s leading fighters, he is perhaps the finest active southpaw of all, and Krassyuk said: “[Fury] has no skills to deal with a southpaw – this is number one. Number two, he is not disciplined. He cannot stay focused and cannot work hard in the training camp – you see it in his body.
“He couldn’t feel the distance [against Ngannou]. If the fighter does not feel the distance in the ring it means that he did not have enough training. It means that his sparring was very weak; that he did not train at all, or at least train properly. The third thing is that there was no game plan. It was more like an exhibition – like a circus.
“And the fourth thing – his arrogance. He underestimates [Ngannou]. When everyone calls you the king and the top of the world, at some point you start to believe it, and the minute you believe that is the minute your career starts to decline, and that’s very important – to stay humble.”
Fury, 35, first became a world champion in 2015, when he even more unexpectedly dethroned Usyk’s compatriot Wladimir Klitschko, but Krassyuk said: “He’s not the man he claims to be. Let me specify. Let’s be fair. We know Tyson since the fight with Klitschko. Before that there was a fighter, Tyson Fury, but the big name Tyson Fury was created inside the fight with Wladimir Klitschko.
“And Wladimir Klitschko lost his fight with Tyson Fury for the reasons that stand out of logic. That was a black swan [an anomaly] for Wladimir Klitschko at that date. Normally he would win 10 fights of 10 with Tyson Fury. But that date he lost it for unpredictable circumstances.
“Then Tyson Fury disappeared. Then he came back, [had] some warm-up fights, and then we had the trilogy with [Deontay] Wilder.
“The fans in the boxing world, they treat Tyson not within his whole career – they treat Tyson as a fighter, summarising only several fights they saw with Wilder, with [Derek] Chisora, with Dillian Whyte, and that’s it. It’s not a complete picture, and the guy has a lot of weaknesses in his boxing and in his mental preparation.”