Fury reveals he has secret plan to beat Wilder
Fury has a secret plan to complete a stunning comeback by regaining his title against Wilder
As Tyson Fury attempts to pull off a daring heist to regain the World Boxing Council heavyweight crown from Deontay Wilder, after a brief return following 30 months in the wilderness, the “Gypsy King” knows the risks. “One mistake and it could be over against one of the most dangerous punchers ever,” he said.
Victory in the battle of Los Angeles on Saturday against the American knockout artist would secure Fury’s place in the record books as a two-time world champion – he first claimed No 1 heavyweight status against Wladimir Klitschko in November 2015 – and the triumph would be likely to rank as one of the great boxing comebacks. But Fury is under no illusions about the fine margins. “It is the biggest challenge of my career,” Fury said in an exclusive interview with The Sunday Telegraph. “If I make one mistake, it’s over. It could be over, because he’s probably the biggest puncher in history. Definitely one of them. I don’t remember seeing anyone else with 39 out of 40 knockouts. I’m a heavyweight historian and I don’t believe anyone has had that record.”
The huge frame of Fury, all 6ft 9in and 18st of him, relaxes on a sofa in a mansion in the Hollywood hills, a sanctuary for the last month of an eight-week California training camp. “Wilder’s style is very unusual, but he’s very conventional in some ways. A lot of people make out he’s very wild, but he’s calm and only throws big bombs when he knows his opponent is in trouble. But I’ve got something up my sleeve. Like Max Schmeling saw something with Joe Louis and he didn’t tell anybody the plan.”
Schmeling did indeed end the great American heavyweight’s unbeaten record in 1936, at Yankee Stadium in New York. Schmeling had openly stated he had found what he believed was the key to victory, and employed it to brilliant effect. He used his jab in the opening three rounds, punctuated by a right cross. Louis was dropped in the fourth by a right, and the German went on to stop his befuddled opponent in the 12th.
“I see something with Wilder. And I’m not going to tell anybody until I reveal it on the night,” Fury said. “There’s a chink in that armour. I’m going to take Wilder’s heart away. It’s going to be a more humiliating performance than it was against Klitschko. Everyone says I won’t do it against a big puncher. But I did it against Klitschko and I will against Wilder.
“I’m going to have fun. Wilder is going to have the most awkward night of his life, believe me. My movement and speed is enough to disarm anybody. My length is very underestimated. Wilder has never fought anybody bigger than him and he’s never had to punch up before. He’s never had to chase someone down who’s moving. With all power punchers, they’ve got to set their feet. He can’t land power punches on the move. He’s got to stand still and that’s something I don’t do. Don’t get me wrong – he’s a tough fight for anybody. People think it’ll be this big war, but it will be a chess match, cagey early on.”
It has been quite a comeback by
Fury over the past year, a return from depression, from bingeing on alcohol and drugs, losing more than
9st after becoming obese. But there is a new calmness about him. “I used to put a lot of pressure on myself but now I don’t. What have I got to lose? I’ve come back from wanting to commit suicide and 28 stone, to as fit as a fiddle and in a great place mentally. Whether I win or lose a decision against Wilder, I’ve already won. “Being the hungry challenger, not a champion, gets more out of me. When I’m expected to beat Sefer Seferi, Francesco Pianeta or Joe Bloggs, I only do enough to win,” he said of his two comeback fights. “But when you’ve got someone like Wilder, who is a real challenge, it’s different. I know I have to be on my mettle for every second, because he’s so dangerous.”
The 30-year-old certainly looks in top shape. “For the first time in my career I didn’t have to lose the weight,” he said. “I just had to work hard, spar, prepare the plan, so I’m very happy. It’s my third fight this year. Even going into the Klitschko fight I wasn’t this active. But then again, I didn’t have three years out of action. You never can tell what will happen in a fight.
“The way I look at it, this is just a boxing match: two men having a fight, a gentleman’s sport. We’re both unbeaten fighters. I believe I can do everything I need to do. But you can never tell if it’s going to be good enough on the night, until you’re in there. As soon as I’m in there for 10 seconds I’ll know what will happen, I’ll know if I’m going to win or lose.”
Deontay Wilder vs Tyson Fury is live on BT Sport Box Office on Saturday.
Man on a mission: Tyson Fury says he is already a winner after overcoming his demons but he wants to beat Deontay Wilder