Dubai: Boxing refuses to go the UFC way with veteran promoter Frank Warren insisting that the third fight in the Tyson Fury vs Deontay Wilder trilogy scheduled for July “will not happen”.
Instead the decider has been pushed back as far as October because of the havoc being caused by the global coronavirus pandemic.
“The 18th will not happen,” said Warren, stressing that the bout would not take place behind closed doors.
“The commission in Nevada has said ‘no boxing’ for the foreseeable future and Las Vegas has closed down all the casinos – it’s like a ghost town there.
“No-one knows what’s happening day to day, all we can do is hope for the best and push it (Fury vs Wilder) back as far as possible so October looks like the date for the fight,” added Warren.
“A fight between them behind closed doors just won’t happen – these guys are too big names to be fighting behind closed doors.”
Unlike Warren’s guarded approach, UFC boss Dana White has revealed that he is hell-bent on hosting a mega closed-door event featuring lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov and the challenger Tony Ferguson on April 18.
Should the Fury vs Wilder fight happen later in the year, it would bring to an end a bitter rivalry that the two heavyweight fighters have endured since the controversial draw in their first meeting in December 2018 in Los Angeles.
Most experts were of the opinion that Fury had done enough on the scorecards to have got the win.
However last month, the 3year-old ‘Gypsy King’ gained revenge without the helpd of the judges when he scored a brutal seventh-round technical knockout win over Wilder at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas
In doing so he wrested the WBC (World Boxing Council) title from the American and handed him the first defeat of his career.
Warren, who promotes Fury, believes that he is the real deal and will continue his dominance over Deontay.
“Tyson’s got Deontay’s number, even if they fought in 10 years,” said Warren.
The trilogy has scuppered Fury’s plans of a career-defining fight with fellow Briton Anthony Joshua – the current holder of the WBA, IBF and WBO world heavyweight titles.
“Tyson’s contractual obligation was to have a third match with Wilder so it’s very difficult to talk about Joshua,” added Warren.
“Tyson’s at home with his family, doing his best to keep fit, but it’s the same for all of us. It is a terrible position everyone is in and we hope it passes soon.”
The Gypsy King was also hoping to take on Joshua in a bout that would see the crowing of heavyweight boxing’s first undisputed champion since Lennox Lewis held all the belts in 2000.
Meanwhile, Joshua was scheduled to fight Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on June 20, but his promoter, Eddie Hearn, has said it could be postponed to July as a resut of the disruption of the Premier League season due to coronavirus.
Most of the leading clubs have no less than nine matches left to play this season with Liverpool the clear title favourites. However, the relegation battle and race for the European places are still wide open.
After a meeting between all 20 clubs on Thursday, March 19, it was announced that the Premier League will not resume until April 30 at the earliest.