Tyson Fury is taking great delight in proving his doubters wrong as he seeks to unify the world heavyweight titles.
‘The Gypsy King’ holds the WBC and Ring magazine belts as well as being acclaimed as the lineal champion in boxing’s marquee division.
And the 31-year-old, who is preparing for a third fight with Deontay Wilder later this year, loves the fact he’s come back from the abyss after being written off time after time. Notably when ballooning to 28 stone and suffering mental health issues before making an astonishing comeback which culminated in that devastating seventh-round TKO of Wilder in Las Vegas in February.
He told Sky Sports: “They said I’d never do it, they said I would never have the dedication. Then they wrote me off because I wasn’t body beautiful like everybody else, then they wrote me off because the heavyweight champion of the world was Wladimir Klitschko. I had to go to Germany, that was a write-off, and then they wrote me off because I went to 28 stone and had mental health problems, but that couldn’t keep me down.
“Then they wrote me off because I had to fight the biggest puncher in the history of boxing after only two, petty comeback fights, but that didn’t keep me down. Then they wrote me off, because I’m all washed up and I can’t take a punch anymore, and then they wrote me off because I got a massive cut. Then they wrote me off because I had 10 changes of trainers.
“Then they wrote me off because Wilder was going to be better the second time around, and then they wrote me off because they said they didn’t believe in what I was going to do and I’m a feather-duster puncher, and I can’t crack an egg, and I’m useless.
“But here I am today, stand-alone heavyweight, leading superstar in boxing. I’m still fat, still ugly, still bald, still a big man, and I’m still unstoppable.”
If he can safely negotiate that third meeting with Wilder, Fury is likely to meet fellow Brit Anthony Joshua in the biggest fight in British boxing history. For all the belts, all the marbles.
But whatever happens he is remarkably laid-back about the future, and comfortable in the knowledge that he will fight until he knows it is time to stop.
“Nothing to prove to anybody. Not one thing to prove at all, but I box now, because I love boxing and I’ve been doing it all my life. Why walk away when I’m still only young?” he added.
“Hopefully I box until I have a good sit down with all the team and we all decide it’s time to walk away, while I’m on top, and then sail away into the sunset, and then who knows what will happen after that.”