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Tyson Fury produces career-bes...
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Tyson Fury produces career-best performance to beat Deontay Wilder

Ciaran Bradley
Ciaran Bradley

09:07 23 Feb 2020

As he led the MGM Grand crowd in a rendition of Don McLean's 'American Pie', the boxing world was left to marvel at Tyson Fury's career-best performance on the biggest stage.

Fury boxed as if a man on a mission - seven rounds of sharp movement and powerful left-hand jabs and overhand rights defeating Deontay Wilder to claim the WBC heavyweight belt.

If the pre-fight hype can intoxicate audiences and obscure each boxer's skills, Fury took to keeping Wilder at arm's length both figuratively and literally.

Fury's overwhelming reach and smart movement disarmed the most powerful puncher in the division, as the world was treated to a comprehensive outclassing.

The third round was key.

Wilder was floored for only the second time in his career, as the Las Vegas crowd stood to ovate Fury, who appeared to be enjoying himself.

It was a right hand behind Wilder's ear that caused the chaos to begin with and Fury was not backing down.

Another knockdown swiftly followed, as Fury appeared to be methodical in his approach, but with the swagger that he brings to the biggest nights.

Wilder, in truth, looked exhausted from the third round onwards. The clinches became ever-present as the American looked to tie up his opponent and regain his composure.

It was during one of these clinches that we were treated to the rather bizarre spectacle of Fury appearing to lick Wilder's neck, covered in the American's blood.

Fury proved again that he is a man for the big nights, appearing to relish the intoxicating atmosphere of a heavyweight title fight.

A third fight between the pair is likely, but it would be a brave man to bet against Fury in the rematch.

 "I told everybody with a pair of ears that the Gypsy King would return to the throne," Fury told BT Box Office.

"My last fight everybody wrote me off. I was underweight and over-trained. I'm a destroyer. Not bad for someone with pillow fists.

"I'm a man of my word. I told Wilder, his team, the world. We trained for a knockout; we weren't tapping around in that gym.

"I talk like this because I can back it up. People write me off, they look at my fat belly and bald head and think I can't fight. He fought the best Tyson Fury, we're both in our primes.

"I expect him to ask for the third fight. I know he's a warrior and I'll be waiting."

After this performance, there will not be many in the heavyweight division waiting with baited breath to face Fury.

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