Wilder stokes Fury as Pianeta beck­ons

Heavy­weight duo could be set for Novem­ber fight in Las Ve­gas if Fury beats Pianeta tonight

The Irish Times - Sports Weekend - - SPORTS -

Deon­tay Wilder gate­crashed the weigh-in for Tyson Fury’s fight with Francesco Pianeta in Belfast where he had an ag­gres­sive con­fronta­tion with Fury’s fa­ther John – and then had to be sep­a­rated from his ri­val heavy­weight.

The WBC heavy­weight cham­pion has flown to Belfast from the United States to be ring­side for tonight’s fight at Windsor Park, where should Fury suc­ceed they plan to an­nounce he will chal­lenge Wilder next.

A date of Novem­ber 17th in Las Ve­gas has been pre­pared for their an­tic­i­pated fight and Fury demon­strated fur­ther signs of progress by weigh­ing in at 18st 6lbs – sig­nif­i­cantly lighter than the 19st 10lbs he was for his come­back fight against Se­fer Se­feri in June.

The 30-year-old cut a re­laxed fig­ure along­side Ger­many’s Francesco Pianeta, who at 18st 2lbs was nar­rowly lighter, and Fury re­mained cool when “Bronze Bomber” Wilder came into view yelling his trade­mark “Bomb squad”, to which John Fury ap­par­ently took of­fence.

Fol­low­ing ini­tial at­tempts to shout each other down, the 54-year-old Fury ag­gres­sively ap­proached Wilder be­fore he was re­strained by a se­cu­rity guard and his son’s trainer Ben Dav­i­son, and fur­ther shout­ing con­tin­ued.

It was in the crowded re­cep­tion area of Belfast’s Europa Ho­tel, af­ter the weigh-in was staged in a func­tion room, that the 32-year-old Wilder then had his con­fronta­tion with Tyson Fury, the for­mer WBA, WBO and IBF cham­pion.

The two sim­i­larly shouted at each other, and also had to be sep­a­rated be­fore the threat of vi­o­lence grew, even if Wilder con­sis­tently re­mained calm.

He has tar­geted Fury since ne­go­ti­a­tions for a uni­fi­ca­tion fight with An­thony Joshua ended un­suc­cess­fully, and of Satur­day’s fight with the 33-year-old Pianeta, Wilder said: “Fury’s go­ing to win, then I’m go­ing to knock him out.

“Joshua’s old news. The new kid in town is Fury. Ours is the big­gest fight.”

Of John Fury, he added: “I’ll get my grand­fa­ther out of the grave to knock him out.”

Af­ter­wards, Fury vowed to get “se­ri­ous” against Pianeta for the sec­ond fight of his come­back.

Far­ci­cal af­fair

When Fury re­turned af­ter a near-three-year ab­sence against the lit­tle-known Se­fer Se­feri in June, a far­ci­cal af­fair un­folded in which he won in four rounds de­spite fight­ing with min­i­mal in­tent and reg­u­larly in­ter­act­ing with the crowd.

Four such un­am­bi­tious rounds means the prospect of fight­ing the dan­ger­ous Wilder rep­re­sents a sig­nif­i­cant risk, par­tic­u­larly hav­ing also rarely worked with new trainer Ben Dav­i­son, but it is also too tempt­ing for the 30-year-old to re­sist.

Satur­day’s fight against Ger­many’s Pianeta, 33, is there­fore the finest chance he will have of re­gain­ing the sharp­ness he had be­fore his lengthy lay-off, and he said: “Ben wants a se­ri­ous ap­proach for this fight and that’s what he’ll get. It’s all busi­ness in Belfast.

“Every­thing has gone great, and if Ben wants me to be se­ri­ous about this fight then I will be se­ri­ous. “I’m not nor­mally se­ri­ous about any­thing in my life, every­thing is fun and games — even [de­feat­ing Wladimir] Kl­itschko.

“I wasn’t se­ri­ous — I was do­ing dance moves, every­thing. But Ben wants this se­ri­ous, he will get se­ri­ous. “I’ll go in there and do my job and that’s it. I won’t even smile once. “I feel to­tally re­ju­ve­nated; I’m even talk­ing bet­ter.”

In the main event in Belfast, Carl Framp­ton de­fends his in­terim WBO feather­weight ti­tle against Aus­tralia’s Luke Jack­son, and IBF cham­pion Josh War­ring­ton will sim­i­larly be ring­side amid plans for him to next fight the North­ern Ir­ish­man.

In­terim WBO feather­weight cham­pion Framp­ton, 31, ap­peared dry on the scales and af­ter strip­ping naked came in ex­actly on the nine-stone limit.

It is rou­tine for the main-event fight­ers to ap­pear among the last at a weigh-in, but on this oc­ca­sion they were in­stead first, con­tribut­ing to the be­lief that Framp­ton had strug­gled to make weight.

Aus­tralia’s Jack­son, 33, was 8st 12.8lbs.


A 25,000-strong crowd is ex­pected at Windsor Park, and the 31-year-old Framp­ton said: “Jack­son won’t have ex­pe­ri­enced an at­mos­phere like Belfast can cre­ate. It’s hard enough in front of 9,000 at the SSE Arena so just think how tough it’s go­ing to be for Jack­son to fight a home­town boy at Windsor Park.

“It’s go­ing to be so tough. It might make him fold or it might gee him up, but one thing’s for sure, it won’t be easy for him.”

Jack­son re­mains un­de­feated in 16 fights but has never fought out­side of his home coun­try, and he told Press As­so­ci­a­tion Sport: “If I win this fight, we’re all go­ing to make some money, and that’s what it’s all about.

“I want to set up my fam­ily and my fam­ily’s fu­ture. I want every­thing Carl’s got; if I can make it hap­pen on Satur­day night, my life changes.

“My life’s good now, but when I was grow­ing up it wasn’t so good. I got in­volved in drugs, and had some men­tal health is­sues [in Ob­ses­sive Com­pul­sive Dis­or­der]. Life is good, but I want to make it bet­ter.”


Tyson Fury’s fa­ther John with Deon­tay Wilder at yes­ter­day’s weigh-in at the Europa Ho­tel, Belfast yes­ter­day.

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