Tyson Fury accused of 'playing around' as video sparks backlash ahead of blockbuster Oleksandr Usyk fight

Boxing news Tyson Fury

Boxing news: Tyson Fury is in the spotlight ahead of his fight with Oleksandr Usyk

Jack Otway

By Jack Otway

Published: 11/12/2023

- 09:45

Updated: 12/12/2023

- 09:53

The Gypsy King will be hoping to reign supreme when the two men step into the ring on February 17

Tyson Fury has been accused of 'playing around' as his fight with Oleksandr Usyk creeps closer.

The two men will lock horns in Saudi Arabia on February 17 after confirming a new date for their bout last month.

Fury enters the fight with a point to prove, having struggled during his win over Francis Ngannou at the end of October.

The 35-year-old has vowed to take his upcoming battle with Usyk seriously, having been accused of underestimating Ngannou last time out.

Yet Usyk's manager, Egis Klimas, has now accused Fury of 'playing around'.

The Briton shared a video of himself relaxing with his family on a luxury yacht, with Fury also parasailing.

Klimas, however, has taken a dim view of the 35-year-old's actions and said on X: "When one is playing around another training hard.

"We will see you February 17th."

Fury and Usyk are both unbeaten ahead of their fight, which has the makings of a classic.

The Gypsy King has won 34 of his 35 career fights, drawing the other against Deontay Wilder back in December 2018.

And Usyk has won all 21 of his fights so far, with 14 of those coming via knockout.

Meanwhile, the Ukrainian's promoter Alexander Krassyuk was recently asked if Fury's narrow win over Ngannou had changed things ahead of the February 17 showdown.

Yet he dismissed that theory and insisted Usyk was taking the fight as seriously as ever before.

"Let me say, the Francis Ngannou fight didn’t change his mindset," Krassyuk told Betway.

"He’s a very reasonable and wise man and understands that sometimes, sh***y days happen and that was a completely sh***y day for Tyson.

"There can be different reasons for it but that was one of the worst performances we have ever seen by Tyson Fury.

"But it doesn’t mean on February 17 we will see the Tyson Fury that fought Francis Ngannou.

"As a team, we discussed this issue and believe this will be the biggest and toughest fight of Tyson Fury’s career.

"He knows how hard he has to train and work to step into the ring with unified heavyweight and former undisputed cruiserweight champion.

"Tyson is the man and the thing that happened to him against Ngannou, he underestimated him and didn’t think he was a boxing man but Usyk is a boxing man and he will treat him with all of the seriousness he should give him.

"There is a size difference, a weight difference, boxing experience, boxing IQ, footwork and a difference in amateur experience.

"If you put all the factors on the table, there is no 100 per cent answer – the answer will be found within the 12 rounds, and this is the fight for the undisputed heavyweight championship, and you can’t guarantee who is the winner but I am confident because I know how much work Usyk does in a training camp and how many challenges he overcomes.

"I can’t argue with Tyson that it is up to God who the winner is but Usyk is made different and is the former undisputed cruiserweight champion and unified heavyweight champion but is so humble with it.


Boxing news Tyson Fury Oleksandr Usyk

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


"But I know Tyson can overcome his arrogance and become a student in the training camp and it is something we want.

"We want this fight to be a horrendous fight, a hard fight and to overcome a Tyson Fury at his best because the value of the victory becomes so high."

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