Home Boxing News Tyson Fury says corner instructions cost him the win against Oleksandr Usyk

Tyson Fury says corner instructions cost him the win against Oleksandr Usyk

Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk. Photo credit: Francisco Seco/The Associated Press

Tyson Fury 34-1-1 (24) has blamed poor instructions from his corner for the first loss of his professional career.

The 35-year-old Brit lost his WBC heavyweight title to WBA, WBO, IBF and Ring Magazine champion Oleksandr Usyk 22-0 (14) by split decision at Kingdom Arena in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Saturday night.

Ukrainian southpaw Usyk, 37, overcame a slow start to score a knockdown in the ninth to edge the bout by scores of 115-112, 113-114 and 114-113.

Fury’s corner, consisting of head coach SugarHill Steward, assistant Andy Lee and father John Fury, competed for airtime between rounds and often provided conflicting instructions for their boxer.

“I’m not a judge and I can’t judge a fight while I’m boxing it,” Fury said.

“If they’d said to me before the last round that I was down I would have gone and tried to finish it but everyone in the corner believed we were up.

“All I had to do was just keep boxing and keep doing what I was doing and I was getting it.

“I’m not going to cry about it, I’ve had plenty of victories.

“I was having a lot of fun, I was playing around, I had my hands around my back, I was enjoying it.”

Usyk targeted Fury’s body throughout the fight and repeatedly found a home for his overhand right, the punch that eventually dropped Fury late in the fight. For his part, the jab and the uppercut were particularly potent weapons for Fury. With the win Usyk became the first undisputed heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis a quarter of a century ago.

Lewis, who was part of the DAZN broadcast team, said: “Fury was boxing like he won the fight. No boxer can judge and say they won the fight. Every time a round was close they should look at it like a loss.”

Usyk and Fury will not meet in an immediate rematch, again in Saudi Arabia, that is expected to take place in October.

“We’ve punched fuck out of each other for 12 rounds there, so we’re going to go home, eat some food, drink a few beers, spend some family time, walk my dog, go to the tip and me and Frank are going to talk about what’s going to happen in the future,” Fury said at the post-fight press conference.

He added that he would not be making any major changes to his game plan the second time around, besides being more active with his punch output.

“I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I think I’d just do a little bit more of the same, keep my defence a little bit tighter, a bit more focused and not so much messing around because I was having fun in there,” said Fury.

“I was playing around, I was hitting him to the body, uppercuts to the head and I thought I was bossing the fight.”

“That’s what the contract says,” said Fury’s co-promoter Frank Warren about a second fight between the two best big men on the planet.

“It’s what he wants. It’s his call. It’s Tyson’s call. So whatever he wants to do is up to him. And the clause in the contract says an immediate rematch.”