Tyson Fury branded a ‘disgrace to boxing’ by Zhilei Zhang for ‘avoiding’ Anthony Joshua and Oleksandr Usyk

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That’s the view of Zhilei Zhang, who believes it’s a shame the ‘Gypsy King’ will now fight former UFC star Francis Ngannou rather than defend his WBC belt.

Fury has consistently been criticised for not taking on another top contender for his title since defeating Deontay Wilder in their trilogy in October 2021.

He beat Dillian Whyte last April and then Derek Chisora in December, after a mega-fight with Joshua fell through.

Since then, a unification clash with Usyk has also fallen by the wayside despite plenty of negotiations.

anthony joshua

Now, with Fury opting to take a big-money boxing match with MMA heavyweight Ngannou in Saudi Arabia, those stars are now battling amongst themselves.

AJ will fight Whyte on August 12 at the O2 Arena and Usyk will battle Daniel Dubois two weeks later in Poland.

Zhang propelled himself into contention for a title fight too, defeating Joe Joyce in April. But an activated rematch clause sees a potential tilt delayed.

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And, as the rest of the division get ready to duke it out, the Chinese superstar has taken aim at Fury.

He told Standard Sport, via Free Bets: “‘When you look at Tyson Fury – he avoided Joshua, he avoided Usyk. He chose to fight somebody who has never been in the ring before.

“[Ngannou] is a novice, he’s just turning pro. Yes he’s a UFC champion and I have respect for him, but when it comes to the ring it’s a different story.

“So Tyson Fury I think is a disgrace to the sport of boxing. Shame on him.”

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But Zhang has admitted had Joyce not opted to take him on a second time, he may well have been the man to fight Fury.

And he’s still hopeful he will in the future.

He said: “My team were in conversations with Tyson Fury’s team, we were very close to making that fight before the rematch clause was activated.

“I believe that fight is going to happen, one way or another.”

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