The long-running saga that is the pursuit to unify the heavyweight division may soon come to an end, with reports suggesting Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk are set to meet.
The public were eager to see Fury and fellow Brit Anthony Joshua face off in a unification bout, however, the latter no longer holds any of the belts after successive losses to Usyk in 2021 and 2022.
Usyk earned a decision victory over AJ to claim the WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO straps at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in September 2021 before winning the rematch, again by decision, earlier this month in Saudi Arabia.
The two-weight world champion, who was the undisputed cruiserweight title holder between 2018 and 2019, is now in the driving seat to set up a mouth-watering clash with WBC and The Ring champion Fury.
Fury, like Usyk, is yet to taste defeat as a professional boxer and he recently announced his retirement after defending his gold against Dillian Whyte at Wembley Stadium.
Despite retiring, Fury has hinted on several occasions since overcoming Whyte in April that he would return to the ring for the right opportunity.
There are likely just two fights that would interest the Gypsy King, who is 33/1 to be named BBC Sports Personality of the Year, an undisputed contest with Usyk or an all-British blockbuster with Joshua.
Fury's promoter, Frank Warren, has already made plenty of positive sounds regarding a meeting with Usyk, proclaiming the bout "will be made" after the Ukrainian's win in Saudi Arabia.
It appears that it's just a case of the two camps getting together for negotiations to work out all the details and logistics.
There isn't a confirmed date for this bout yet, however, there are plenty of reports suggesting it could take place early in 2023.
It's claimed the two camps have held tentative talks and they are considering Saturday 4th February, although that is far from certain and the date could be pushed back if talks between both sets of representatives prove difficult.
Again, the venue hasn't been confirmed but several potential arenas have already been touted across a variety of countries.
Bob Arum, who represents Fury via his company Top Rank, has revealed four destinations are currently being considered.
A return to the Middle East could be on the cards for Usyk with Qatar and Saudi Arabia in the mix, while Las Vegas and London are also in the running.
Yes. If they do manage to finalise all the details then all of the heavyweight titles will be up for grabs.
Usyk holds the WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO belts and Fury is the WBC and The Ring champion.
Fury turned professional in 2008, beating Bela Gyongyosi via a first round TKO in Nottingham. He has never lost a professional fight and currently holds a 32-1-0 record, having drawn his first meeting with Deontay Wilder in 2018.
The 34-year-old, who was inactive between November 2015 and June 2018 as he battled with mental health issues, has picked up 23 victories via KO or TKO with just 10 of his trips to the ring going the distance.
Usyk is a year older than Fury but he turned professional much later in life after winning gold at the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
The Ukrainian made his professional debut in Kyiv in 2013, beating Felipe Romero by TKO in the fifth round, and he became the interim WBO cruiserweight champion in just his fifth fight.
He unified the cruiserweight division courtesy of a unanimous decision victory over Murat Gassiev in 2018 before defending his belts against Tony Bellew later that year.
A move up to the heavyweight division came in 2019 as he made easy work of Chazz Witherspoon prior to seeing off Derek Chisora.
In just his third fight at heavyweight, Usyk outclassed Joshua to win the WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO belts and he repeated that feat in August 2022 to take his overall record to 20-0, with 13 victories via KO or TKO and seven courtesy of a decision.
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