News emerged earlier this month to confirm that the postponed fight of Tyson Fury and Wladimir Klitschko will take place a month later on 28th November at the Espirit Arena in Dusseldorf.
In September, the fight between the two heavyweight champions due to take place on October 28th was postponed due to Wladimir Klitschko sustaining a calf injury rendering him unfit to take part. The postponement occurred just two days after a heated confrontation between the two boxers at a London press conference.
Newitts takes a look at the opponents' current situations and debates the question, does postponement of a fight affect its outcome?
Some of the most iconic heavyweight fights in history have taken place after injury-induced delays. Given the extreme lengths fighters will go to during training, it is hardly surprising that injuries and postponements occur and it has long been accepted as part and parcel of the game.
There have been several postponements in recent months from other heavyweight fighters prior to a fight with Fury such as David Haye who postponed following injuries to his eye and shoulder, and Dereck Chisora following an injury to his hand, therefore, can we blame Fury for possibly starting to feel quite frustrated following the latest postponement?
Certainly, there are proven advantages to postponing a fight for both opponents. For the injured opponent, a time of reflection can be a welcome relief. In this case, Wladimir Klitschko has time to rehabilitate himself, and while he continues to gain physical strength, his mental strength could also become stronger. In comparison, Tyson Fury's confidence will inevitably have been altered during the change and it will perhaps take him some time to build himself up again.
Looking at the history of postponed fights, we refer to one of the greatest fighters of all time, Mohammed Ali, who didn't take postponements of fights very well. In 1974 When George Foreman had to pull out of the famous 'Rumble in the Jungle' due to injury, Ali insisted that another fighter should fill in for him instead . However, it was well documented that his reasoning went beyond the actual fight - apparently he was also keen to return to the US to enjoy pretty girls and ice-cream! Whilst Ali remained upbeat and jovial about the six-week delayed fight - he had time to secretly plan a successfully strategy that saw him undo Foreman at the end of eight historic rounds. Would the outcome have been very different if Foreman had not been injured? We'll never know.
Mike Tyson is well known for being one of the most formidable fighters of all time, but even he experienced many a setback during his career. He once waited eight weeks to compete in a fight against rival Holyfield before attacking him with all the fury he could muster, to come up triumphant in the third round.
Fury versus Klitschko
Fury has already made it clear to his opponent that there is no love lost between the pair. Describing the heavyweight kingpin as having, "as much charisma as my underpants" at a recent press conference he showed his playful yet aggressive nature to its true colours.
In response, Klitschko calmly replied: "I believe he has never faced a challenge like me before and I don't believe he will again. I'm a unique fighter, one of a kind. There's never been someone like me in history - a fighter like me only comes along every 1,000 years."
Fury has continued to throw many insults Klitschko's way - whether they are meant to undermine the fellow heavyweight or to boost his own self-confidence prior to the fight is debatable. What remains clear is that despite Klitschko's age (he will turn 40 in less than one month), he sees Fury's antics as nothing more than "bizarre". Perhaps this proves that maturity of mind can triumph over physicality.
What can we expect in Dusseldorf?
Klitschko is currently undergoing intense therapy to overcome his calf problem and he remains confident he will be able to defend his title in Dusseldorf in eight weeks' time. It's hard to know what Fury and Klitschko will serve up when they finally come face to face in the ring. Perhaps Fury will embrace the current postponement and recognise it as a positive sign? Or maybe it will tip him over the edge and Klitschko will come up triumphant? We'll have to wait and see.
Who do YOU think will win the Fury v Klitschko fight? Let us know your thoughts below.