Fury calls for Joshua bout – “I am the man, the number one in the division”

Tyson Fury [25(18)-0] has commended Anthony Joshua for his dramatic heavyweight title win at the weekend, but claims it would be a difference story if they were to fight.

Joshua, after knocking Klitschko down in the fifth, recovered from a knockdown in the sixth to stop the Ukrainian at Wembley Stadium on Saturday night after eleven rounds of knife-edge action.

The victory saw Joshua [19(19)-0] add the WBA belt to the IBF strap currently resting on his waist.

The clash, attended by 90,000 people in London, has been credited with breathing life into the heavyweight division and drawn plaudits for both men.

Former Irish champion Fury was impressed with Joshua’s powers of recovery and admitted that he was delighted to see the 2012 Olympic gold medalist get the win.

The Gypsy King told Sky Sports that “It was an excellent fight, very entertaining and enjoyable and I was screaming for AJ to smash him.”

“I wonder what people would be saying today if Klitschko had done him in the sixth. I was screaming, pulling my hair out – or what little hair I’ve got left – because I was worried it would cost us millions!”

“He showed a lot in that fight. He showed he can get dropped and come back, which is what champions are made of. He showed he can recover from taking big shots.”

Fury had, of course, beaten Klitschko in Germany back in November 2015, but a series of outside the ring issues saw him stripped of the IBF title and vacate the WBA and WBO belts.

Following a period out, the Manchester-born big man seems now to be in a good place and is currently in Marbella training ahead of a mooted July 8th return.

However it is Joshua that he wants most, and 28 year old Fury described how “there’s only one fight out there, the biggest fight in the world and everyone knows that. It is the heavyweights, it is me and AJ, no one else.”

“It is the only one the world wants to see and I am here – I am still number one in the world and everybody knows that.”

From their comparative performances versus Klitschko and otherwise, Fury is supremely confident that he would best Joshua and noted how “styles do make fights but I am sure I can beat AJ with one arm tied behind my back.”

“It is a total clash of styles, a total clash of personalities, the complete opposites.”

“I would just like to congratulate AJ for getting through the nip-and-tuck, life-and-death situation, against an old man, so well done – but let’s face it, I am the man, the number one in the division.”

LISTEN: Mick Conlan joins Gavan Casey and Joe O’Neill on Episode 4 of The Irish Boxing Show

Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie