In a recent exclusive interview with IFL TV, boxing promoter Frank Warren unpacked the behind-the-scenes saga that led to the postponement of the Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk bout. This long-awaited fight, initially slated for February, did not materialize, leaving fans and followers with a slew of unanswered questions.
Warren, the man behind many of boxing’s greatest spectacles, shed some much-needed light on the topic during the exclusive interview. “Usyk was waiting for Saudi Arabia. He’s just signed with them. That’s why the Fury fight didn’t happen in the UK.”
Playing the Blame Game
If you thought the punches only flew inside the ring, think again. Warren took a swipe at the critics who’d blamed Tyson for the fight’s postponement. With an edge in his voice, he shared, “Look, what happened was when an offer was made to Tyson to fight on in first in December. Usyk said he was injured, he wouldn’t be ready and he wouldn’t be available to fight in February.”
He went on to explain the subsequent negotiations that revolved around finding another date for the match. Unfortunately, the dates proposed didn’t work out either due to logistics issues or the lack of a formal written offer.
“Then they came back, Prince Khalid and his team, and said they can’t do it until December because the stadium isn’t built yet,” Warren revealed, frustration evident in his words.
The Mysterious Absence of a Saudi Offer
As the conversation progressed, Warren dropped another bombshell – the absence of any concrete offer from Saudi Arabia for the Fury vs Usyk fight.
“We’ve never had a written offer. But they have not given a reason about why an offer is still not coming. They said it will be done, and that’s where we are. But as we sit here now, we have never had an offer this year at all,” Warren disclosed.
A sense of anticipation and an undercurrent of tension pervade the air as Warren wraps up his side of the story. The boxing world, the fighters, and the fans are left hanging, eagerly waiting for the next chapter in this saga.
“Whether they actually do make the offer, I hope they do. We’ll see,” said Warren, the glint of a challenge in his eyes.
Warren Hits Out at Oleksandr Usyk
Warren began another tirade with an impassioned response to a tweet from Ukrainian boxer Oleksandr Usyk. He read Usyk’s tweet aloud, in which the Ukrainian hit back at critics stating,
“You talk about greatness in boxing at the same time you say give me a lot of money. Greatness in boxing is not determined by money, greatness comes from a Victorious part. If you say that I avoid you all, I never have and in fact, I’ve even come to you. I’m ready to box you even without any prize money.”
Warren’s reaction to this was scathing, dismissing Usyk’s claim as “a load of bollocks”. He asserted,
“The bottom line of all this is not about Pride it’s about money, and I get that. I understand it, so stop bullshitting everybody. That’s your Tweet, that’s what you put out. You’ve been offered a chunk of money, far more money you’re getting anywhere else.”
These stark words from Warren reflect his belief in the role of financial gain in the sport, countering Usyk’s idealistic notion of boxing greatness.
The drama unfolds as we stay tuned for the day when the resounding sound of the gong finally heralds the showdown between Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk.