Tyson Fury, 31, the son of Irish traveller emigrants who settled in Manchester, England, fought to a draw against the heavyweight boxing champion of the world Deontay Wilder in Los Angeles. Deontay Wilder will retain the WBC world title, though both men will remain unbeaten.
It was a very controversial decision with most pundits believing Fury had won despite two knockdowns.
Fury was knocked down twice, barely beating the count in the 9th and 12th round but was far superior in the early and middle rounds.
Frank Warren, Fury’s manager was livid, “I didn't think he (Fury) was going to get up (in round 12), and at the end of the round he was pushing him back, that heart and steel, he is what he says a pure fighting man... everyone knows he won it, we'll make the rematch... he won that fight tonight and what we'll do is do out best to get it on again.”
Getting up from that knockdown, coming back to taunt Wilder and then back him up, tells you everything you need to know about @Tyson_Fury!— Frank Warren (@frankwarren_tv) December 2, 2018
WHAT A FIGHT!!! 👏
There is definitely unfinished business... #WilderFury pic.twitter.com/aBoBuHJdrx
Fury was magnanimous after the fight. He talked about a very public bout with mental health problems that hastened descent into addiction and despair and the drug ban had led him to the brink of suicide.
“If you look back at about a year ago today, I was about 400lbs,” he said. “I was in terrible shape. It’s no secret what I’ve been through. But it’s proof anyone can come back from anything. Anyone can do it. I ain’t a special human being. I’m just a normal man. But with the right help and the right guidance, anyone can turn their life around.”
Tyson’s father John Fury, who named his son after Mike Tyson, is the son of a Galway native. His mother is from Belfast. Fury was a 5 to 1 outsider in the fight.
Fury has represented both England and Ireland as an amateur, winning the British championship in 2008 before turning professional later that year. He is currently undefeated at 25-0. He is a two-time former British and English champion, a former European, Commonwealth and Irish heavyweight champion, as well as a former WBO Inter-Continental and current WBO International heavyweight champion.
Fury was born into a family of Irish Traveller heritage. His paternal grandfather was from Tuam, County Galway, which is also the birthplace of his father John Fury. His maternal grandmother is from County Tipperary and his mother was born in Belfast.
If one lesson can be learned from tonight is that the world would be a better place if people had the self belief and sheer toughness of Tyson Fury. Wilder has the belt, but Fury is the real champ.— Dan Vanderkamp (@DanVanderkamp) December 2, 2018
His family has a long history in boxing; his father competed in the 1980s as "Gypsy" John Fury, initially as a bare knuckle fighter and unlicensed boxer, and then as a professional boxer. He is a cousin of Irish WBO Middleweight World Champion Andy Lee and heavyweight Hughie Fury.
Hughie's father, Peter Fury, is also Tyson's trainer. He is a supporter of Manchester United.
As an amateur, Fury represented both Ireland and England. Fury represented Ireland three times at international level. He initially fought out of the Holy Family Boxing Club in Belfast, Northern Ireland and later switched to the Smithboro Club in County Monaghan in the Republic of Ireland.
He was forced to withdraw from the Irish national championships after officials from the Holy Trinity Boxing Club in West Belfast, the club of the then Irish amateur heavyweight champion, submitted a protest regarding his eligibility. Fury also unsuccessfully tried to qualify for Ireland for the Olympics when still an amateur and attributed his failure to qualify for the Olympics as his reason for turning professional.
On July 23, 2011 he made his professional debut, Fury faced undefeated heavyweight Dereck Chisora and defeated him via unanimous decision.
On 1 December 2012, Fury fought American world title contender Kevin Johnson (W28-L2-D1). Fury won via unanimous decision. At age 24, Fury had a world ranking of 7 according to Boxrec, a number 2 ranking according to the International Boxing Federation, 6th with the World Boxing Council, and 5th with the World Boxing Organization.
In July 2015, it was confirmed that Fury would take part in a World Heavyweight title showdown with Wladimir Klitschko for WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO and The Ring Heavyweight titles. Although the fight was meant to take place on 24 October 2015, Klitschko sustained a calf injury and therefore the fight was put back to 28 November 2015. The fight took place in Düsseldorf, Germany, with Fury winning after twelve rounds on points.
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Fury 27, once told Irish Central.com: “All my people are from Ireland. I was born in Manchester but I am Irish. I have lived in Ireland, visited all my life and when I fight I represent Ireland. It means a lot to me as does the support I get when I fight in Belfast.”
Fury has made many controversial statements, once suggesting that legalization of homosexuality would lead to the apocalypse. British Shadow Cabinet minister Chris Bryant said “his aggressive style of foul homophobia is precisely the kind that leads to young gay suicides.”