Zhilei Zhang Doubles Down on His Desire to Fight Tyson Fury
WBO Interim heavyweight champion Zhilei Zhang (26-1-1, 21KO) is looking to punch the golden ticket by calling out WBC champion Tyson “The Gypsy King” Fury (33-0-1, 24KO).
On April 15, Zhang scored a big upset over ”Juggernaut” Joe Joyce. He followed up that performance with a statement-making knockout in the rematch that has social media buzzing. In the post-fight interview, Zhang used the moment to place a target on The Gypsy King, when asked what’s next.
(Translated from Chinese) “I want to ask the audience, I want to ask you a question. Do you want to see me shut Tyson Fury up?”
It is not the first time Zhang has called out The Gypsy King. Word on the street was that the two were in talks for a July 2023 matchup in Zhang’s home country of China, but a fight never materialized.
IS THERE MUTUAL INTEREST?
Fury is about to face former Ultimate Fighting Championship champion Francis Ngannou in a crossover showdown on October 28 in Saudi Arabia. Some observers are questioning Fury’s commitment to the sport of boxing.
It was a big disappointment when negotiations failed for a proposed April 29 showdown between Fury and unified heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk. At this point, The Gypsy King seems more interested in exhibition bouts against UFC fighters like Ngannou than testing himself against the best in the heavyweight division.
On paper, Fury should be more than interested in fighting Zhang. The WBC champion craves the spotlight and high-profile, big-money bouts. From a financial and global perspective, a match against Zhang in China would be a huge event that would mean a hefty payday.
It’s clear that Zhang is looking for a fight against Fury. But can the same be said when it comes to the WBC champion? If there’s any inkling that Fury desires a matchup with Zhang, it could be a definite possibility in 2024.