WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury has said Oleksandr Usyk doesn’t want to fight him this year, adding he is “not going to wait around” and will announce a fight next week.
It had been hoped that an undisputed heavyweight world championship clash between the pair could be arranged for this year, with Fury having set a September 1 deadline for the fight to be made.
When that day came and passed, Fury took to Twitter a day later and said the WBO, WBA and IBF champion was “running, hiding”, mockingly labelling him a “middleweight”.
On Saturday, when involved in the main event at WWE’s ‘Clash at the Castle’ in Cardiff, Fury said: “Usyk was calling me out after his last fight with [Anthony] Joshua, I’ve replied and said let’s do the fight this year, wherever they want to do it.
“I’ve been waiting for offers from countries to come forward, and all of a sudden Usyk has stated he doesn’t want to fight any more, he wants to fight next year, not this year.
“So I’m not going to wait around for anybody, I’m announcing a fight next week.”
In attendance at the Principality Stadium for the WWE’s first UK stadium show since 1992, Fury got involved in the headline clash between Undisputed Universal Champion Roman Reigns and Scottish star Drew McIntyre.
When Austin Theory attempted to capitalise on the brutal contest by cashing in his ‘money in the bank’ contract on the champion, Fury emerged to floor the 25-year-old with a big right hand.
Reigns would go on to pin McIntyre, with Fury entering the ring to congratulate the champion before commiserating
with McIntyre. The pair then brought the show to a close with a song as Fury belted out his trademark ‘American Pie’.
Asked if he would ever consider joining WWE full-time, Fury said: “At the moment I’m a heavyweight world champion, and I have plenty of fights I have to take care of over the next few years.
“But I really, really have a passion for WWE. Never say never.”
Usyk had himself called out Fury on Friday, saying he does want to face him in an undisputed heavyweight world championship clash and labelling his talk of retirement as “just a game”.
Usyk told Sky Sports via an interpreter: “He wants to fight against me. He wants people to talk about him.
“He hasn’t retired yet, it’s just a game – ‘I’m leaving boxing’, ‘I’m coming back’. He still wants to earn money.
“All the fanciful comments against me, he probably thinks it will touch me. But it won’t
“I take it like the crow arguing with the wolf sitting from the tree… the reality is that if the crow was close to the wolf, she would keep silent.
“Tyson Fury loves to talk. All of that blah blah blah.”
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