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Tyson Fury says it’s not his fault Anthony Joshua and Oleksandr Usyk fights didn’t happen

Tyson Fury after his victory over Dillian Whyte. Photo credit: Getty Images/Julian Finney

WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury 33-0-1 (24) has blamed Oleksandr Usky 20-0 (13) and Anthony Joshua 25-3 (22) for holding up the divison.

The 34-year-old Brit was in negotiations to face WBA, WBO and IBF champion Usyk in late April, but the fight reportedly fell apart when Fury wasn’t willing to concede a 50-50 purse split for the rematch should the Ukrainian southpaw come away victorious.

Usyk agreed to Fury’s demand for a 70-30 purse slit in his favour for the first fight.

The 36-year-old Usyk has since moved on and will now defend his three world championship belts against dangerous puncher Daniel ‘Dynamite’ Dubois 19-1 (18) at Stadion Wroclaw in Wroclaw, Poland on August 26.

“We don’t really know the reasons why Usyk didn’t take the fight in April,” Fury told Sky Sports.

“I’m sure he’s got his reasons and then we find out he’s signed with Skills Challenge, the Saudi Arabian team of boxing people out there. So whatever his reasons are, I’m sure that they suit him and his family. It is what it is.

“But I do believe that you can only do what you can do in this sport. If the fights are available at that time then you take them and if they’re not available then you can’t take them.

“Will we fight in the future? Hopefully. I’d like to. I’ve always believed it’s an easy fight.”

Former two-time unified heavyweight champion Joshua, 33, has long been linked to a fight with Fury but talks have collapsed for various reasons over the years.

The Brit lost back-to-back decision fights to Usyk in 2021 and 2022. He has since moved on with his career, hiring a new trainer in American Derrick James for his win over fringe contender Jermaine Franklin 22-2 (14) in April.

The pair will get the chance to consolidate their working relationship when Joshua takes on late replacement Robert ‘The Nordic Nightmare’ Helenius 32-4 (21) at the O2 Arena in London, England on Saturday night.

If Joshua wins, he is expected to face former WBC champion Deontay Wilder 43-2-1 (42) in Saudi Arabia in January.

“In this last year I’ve tried two or three times. It’s always not happened for whatever reason. I’m not optimistic. For about a week during the negotiations of this year I was very optimistic,” Fury said.

“I thought for years and years that me and Joshua would have fought each other. And he’s not been wanting to take that challenge for years. So you can’t force somebody to do something, no matter how much money there is or how many belts there are or whatever there is on the line.

“You can’t force someone to do something they don’t want to do. Unless both parties are willing then these fights don’t get made, as we’ve seen over the years.”

Fury is preparing to face former UFC heavyweight champion and boxing debutant Francis Ngannou in Saudi Arabia on October 28 in a non-title bout.