WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman has told fans not to blame Tyson Fury for the collapse of the Oleksandr Usyk and Anthony Joshua fights.
The boxing kingpin highlighted how it was not Fury’s fault that they fell apart and also explained why there is no urgency to find the world heavyweight champion a mandatory contender.
Fury is due to share a ring with Francis Ngannou in Riyadh on October 28 in a controversial crossover event with the MMA behemoth.
Fans have slammed the Gypsy King for confirming the Ngannou bout after dreaming of an undisupted face-off against Usyk, and the WBC belt will not be on the line in Saudi Arabia.
‘He is not fighting Oleksandr Usyk because he was not ready last December. Then they couldn’t do it in March and then they went their separate ways. Anthony Joshua – the same thing, so don’t blame Tyson Fury. He has been there and been there ready,’ Sulaiman told Gambling.com.
WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman has told fans ‘don’t blame Tyson Fury’ for the collapsed fights against Anthoyn Joshua and Oleksandr Usyk
Tyson Fury will not be risking his WBC world heavywieght belt when he fights Francis Ngannou
There had been hopes for Fury to take on either Oleksandr Usyk (left) or Anthony Joshua (right)
‘I love the event [between Fury and Francis Ngannou]. Those crossover events are giving the sport respect and doing it within the rules of boxing. Conor McGregor against Floyd Mayweather was a huge event and so will this. We are fine, respectful, and supporting our champion.’
A bout against Usyk would have crowned a first undisputed heavyweight champion since 2000, but the Ukrainian pulled out after weeks of negotiations.
With no mandatory contender, the decision to fight Ngannou for the time being has left some fans frustrated, but Sulaiman insisted that there is no hurry to find a mandatory challenger to Fury.
‘If you force the mandatory just for the sake of it, you are doing a disservice to the sport. We will not be rushing up a mandatory contender.
‘We had ordered Wilder vs Ruiz and the winner would have been a sensational mandatory contender and that fight did not take place. They are not participating in it so there is no mandatory contender. Fury is the best heavyweight without a doubt.
‘We would like to see Fury vs Usyk so we will not interfere in the plans to have a major showdown for all the belts so there is no hurry to find a mandatory contender and we will see what happens at the WBC convention.
‘Tyson Fury is the WBC heavyweight champion. He has been willing, able, and trying to fight Oleksandr Usyk, Anthony Joshua, Andy Ruiz Jr or anyone (available) and has not been able to land the fight that the fans would like to see.’
Speaking with Mail Sport, Ngannou said that training with Mike Tyson is preparing him mentally and technically
Boxing legend Tyson is helping Ngannou, but while Fury has huge respect for him, Fury still makes himself favourite for the fight
Ngannou has stepped up his preparation for the fight by bringing boxing legend Mike Tyson into his training team.
Speaking exclusively to Mail Sport’s Charlotte Daly, he said: ‘Having Mike Tyson present just makes you realise what is happening.
‘Even when you’re tired, even when you’re done for the day, I’m like man one more. I want to do one more. I’m like I just want to be like that man.
‘Then of course, there is the technical aspect that he is bringing too. We all know how technical Mike Tyson was so obviously having his tips and hearing from him is very helpful for me.’
But in another exclusive interview with Daly, Fury brushed off the suggestion that training with ‘living legend’ Tyson would bring Ngannou on an equal footing with him.
”Mike Tyson is a great guy,’ he said. ‘He is a living legend in sport. He is a living legend in boxing. He’s got a lot of knowledge on boxing, I think he will teach Francis a lot.
‘But, I don’t think it would matter who trained Ngannou for this fight. He’s got to fight Tyson Fury and I’m not an easy opponent for anybody no matter who is training you.
‘Everyone’s got a plan until they get punched in the face. That’s exactly what’s going to happen to Ngannou when I fight him.’