Eddie Hearn performs Tyson Fury U-turn ahead of Oleksandr Usyk fight as alarm bells ring

Boxing news Eddie Hearn Tyson Fury

Boxing news: Eddie Hearn now thinks Tyson Fury is capable of beating Oleksandr Usyk

Jack Otway

By Jack Otway

Published: 25/11/2023

- 10:37

The duo will do battle in Saudi Arabia on February 17

Eddie Hearn has changed his tune and is now backing Tyson Fury to beat Oleksandr Usyk on February 17.

The two boxing stars will enter the ring in Saudi Arabia looking to secure heavyweight bragging rights.

Fury is, however, being scrutinised as the fight in Riyadh creeps closer.

The Gypsy King was poor during his recent victory over Francis Ngannou, only winning via split decision after being knocked down in round three of the bout.

Boxing news Tyson Fury Oleksandr Usyk

Boxing news: Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk will meet on February 17


Hearn recently suggested Usyk would destroy Fury, calling their fight a 'mismatch'.

“Usyk is a special breed, we’ve [Anthony Joshua] had two cracks at him," the promoter said after Fury's victory over Ngannou.

"Usyk-Fury is a mismatch, no one wants to see it.”

However, speaking to Boxing Social, the 44-year-old appears to have changed his tune and now thinks the Briton is capable of reigning supreme.

“I think Tyson Fury, Look, there are a lot of signs that he might be in decline after the Ngannou fight," he said.

"But if he is back to his best, if he is firing on all cylinders, I do expect him to win that fight.”

Hearn isn't the only figure to question whether Fury is now past his prime after 35 career fights to date.

The Gypsy King's charismatic father, John, has alarmed fans by admitting he's fearing the worst for his son.

John also thinks Fury requires more time to recover ahead of the Usyk fight - in stark contrast to the optimistic mindset he usually adopts before fights.

“Tyson needs a bit more time to get his conditioning and weight right," he said earlier in the week.

“For me, it looked like he had lost 20lbs of muscle last time. Something was wrong.

“For my money, I have seen a bit of decline in his last three fights.

"It is not a decline in ability but a decline in strength, power, and physical condition.

“I don’t know what they [his team] are doing up there. You have to address it. He didn’t look himself out in Saudi.

“He still won the fight [against Ngannou] because that is what he does best. But the tactics were all wrong for my money, too.

“You don’t try to meet an express train head-on, do you?

"He would have been better boxing off the back foot, slipping and sliding.

"Against the old Tyson, Ngannou wouldn’t have landed a glove on him.”

Meanwhile, former British boxer Carl Froch has criticised Fury - insisting his theatrics during his recent press conference with Usyk were 'embarrassing' and 'not manly'.

“I think it’s old hat," he said when quizzed on the way the 35-year-old conducted himself during the event in London.

"When he starts with the name-calling and personal insults on physical appearances I just think it’s not manly.


Boxing news Tyson Fury John Fury

Boxing news: John Fury fears for Tyson Fury ahead of Oleksandr Usyk showdown


"It’s funny at the start … it’s probably why he struggles to get sponsorship let’s be honest.

"It’s a hard sell for a company when he’s got the mouth he’s got. The potty mouth.

“When I watched it the other day, I’ve got to be honest, I’m bored of listening to him.

"He’s embarrassing himself.

"I thought Oleksandr Usyk was pure class … He came out of this looking very good and Tyson Fury is now the bad guy that everybody wants to lose.

"I’m not talking about myself, I’m talking about the feedback and the comments you read.”

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