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Tuesday, June 18, 2024
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How Fury lost undisputed title to indiscipline

By Kunle Awosiyan

Former WBC heavyweight champion, Tyson Fury, was boastful before the match that he would erase the little man, the unified and current undisputed champion, Oleksandr Usyk, in the earlier rounds of the match.

Of course he did from the start but he soon lost his concentration to indiscipline, unprofessionalism as he took his game plan beyond boxing to drama. Fury played too much. He doesn’t know when to stop playing.

What nearly consumed him against Francis Ngannou, eventually did against the most talented in the division, Oleksandr Usyk.

Fury should be reminded that he is not Muhammad Ali and will never be. He met his match in Usyk and could not control the match anymore after the sixth round.

However, Usyk’s idea of boxing is spiritual and war. Before he stepped into the ring, the newly crowned undisputed heavyweight boxing champion, Oleksandr Usyk said a little but powerful prayer, “Oh Lord you are the one that has always led me where I go. In this match, give me victory if I deserve it.”

The Ukrainian never demanded victory from God, neither did he boast of defeating Fury, he only made a request, which God eventually granted him on a Sunday.

He took his time to fashion out the best time to hit Fury, teasing him with repeated jabs right from round seven. Usyk’s corner would have told him, he was losing five out of the six rounds and now Fury had started to do drama instead of boxing.

It is time to come out against Fury. He did and got the result.

After the match he said, “I have to go back home to meet my family and my church and thank Jesus who gave me victory and many people who have been praying for me. I love you.”

Usyk is spiritual as he is discipline. This does not mean that the former WBC belt holder, Tyson Fury is not spiritual, however his level of discipline has always been questionable.

Fury brought his ‘A” game on Saturday night, winning the first round, losing the second round and went on to win the third, fourth, fifth, sixth and 12 round.

In all, the Briton won six out of 12 but he lost the match in round nine due to his own indiscipline when he exposed himself to a two quick combination from Usyk that hurt him so badly. He lost his balance.

It was like a scene between Muhammad Ali and Ron Lyle, which ended in technical knockout for Ali.

For me, Saturday’s round nine was a stolen knockout from Usyk. The rope and the referee saved Fury from falling. It would have been difficult for him to beat the counts. He was injured with blood dripping from his nostrils.

I once wrote that the outcome of Saturday’s match would depend on the more professional and discipline of the two boxers.

Usyk’s corner knew that as the fight proceeded, Fury would lose concentration, which of course Usyk could capitalise on to finish the Gypsy King.

The Ukrainian has always been a disciplined personality in and out of the ring. This showed on Saturday after he lost 3,4,5,6 consecutively and realised he had to change the game .

He went on to win 7,8,9,10 and 11, capitalising on the indiscipline of the Fury to land some of his good shots that nearly earned him a technical knockout.

It was a close call and a split decision; 115-112, 113-114, 114-113 in favour of Usyk who was unmindful of a “stolen” knockout.

To Usyk, victory is victory no matter how it came but to Fury, it was an undeserved victory to the Ukrainian. Fury had the match in his hands and allowed it to slip away.

Fury said he was robbed so that the boxing world could pacify Usyk over the ongoing Ukrainian and Russian war. He wanted the immediate activation of his rematch clause to be staged later this year.

I want to believe that the only man that can beat Usyk at present is still Fury but a more discipline Fury who will keep to his game plan as he did in the earlier rounds of the Saturday match when he fought from the outside.

He threw a lot of jabs that rattled Usyk and refused to lean on the Ukrainian who was a bit slippery. Fury’s uppercut cut Usyk eyelid and destabilised the Cat earlier in the round.

One had expected the Gypsy King to hit the opening flesh regularly instead he began to perform drama in the ring until Usyk caught up with him in round seven.

I still believe that Usyk is beatable but who will beat him must train hard and concentrate fully because the cat’s spirit inside Usyk is tough.

Congratulations to Oleksandr Usyk, the new undisputed heavyweight boxing champion of the world.

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