Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk are facing a dash to save their undisputed heavyweight title fight for April 29 at Wembley Stadium.
Journalist Steve Kim was first to report on Tuesday that talks had broken down for Fury and Usyk to meet in one of the biggest fights that boxing can deliver, having spoken with the latter’s manager Egis Klimas, who is reportedly exploring other options.
“No matter how much Usyk compromised, he was pushed for more,” Klimas told Kim.
However, hope is not completely lost to save a showdown which has been discussed for months, with Fury’s co-promoter, Frank Warren scrambling to find a solution within the next 24 hours, according to SunSport.
WBC champion, Fury publicly demanded 70% of the overall purse split in his favour, for which Usyk, who holds the WBA ‘super’, WBO and IBF belts agreed to on the condition that ‘The Gypsy King’ donates £1m to Ukraine to help against the ongoing invasion from Russia.
The 34-year-old also urged his rival to agree to a winner takes all deal without a rematch clause in the contract.
Fury even posted a photo with trainer SugarHill Steward who arrived in Morecambe to start preparation for the 36-year-old southpaw.
According to ESPN, the pair could not agree on “other material terms critical to the deal beyond the split.”
“If I start telling you the things he wanted, 15 minutes is not enough,” Usyk’s promoter Alex Krassyuk told talkSPORT on Wednesday.
‼️ Tyson Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk is NOT DEAD YET as Fury’s co-promoter Frank Warren and Usyk’s promoter Alex Krassyuk have agreed to get back on the phone and attempt to salvage the undisputed heavyweight world title fight on April 29th after both being live on talkSPORT together.
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) March 22, 2023
“There was a list of things he wanted which were absolutely unacceptable, complete disrespect to the unified and former undisputed champion.”
Warren has denied that the fight is dead in the water and insists that Fury has agreed to accept a rematch clause deal which mirrors what Usyk received when he face Anthony Joshua in his last fight in August, after dethroning him of his belts 11 months earlier.
The WBA set an April 1 deadline for the heavyweight champions to sign on the dotted line, with the governing body set to order Usyk to fight WBA ‘regular’ champion, Daniel Dubois if a deal with Fury fails to materialise.
Usyk confronted his British rival from ringside following his third victory over Derek Chisora in December at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
Should a last-minute deal come to fruition, Fury and Usyk will get the chance to crown first undisputed heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis and the first in the four-belt era.