Their fight wasn’t remotely competitive, but Derek Chisora was every bit as tough Saturday night as Tyson Fury remembered.
The 38-year-old contender took an inordinate amount of punishment, unnecessarily it seemed, during their one-sided heavyweight title fight Saturday night at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London. Referee Victor Loughlin finally stepped between Fury and Chisora to stop their mismatch with nine seconds remaining in the 10th round.
London’s Chisora knew he didn’t have a legitimate shot at upsetting Fury and therefore didn’t protest the stoppage. After leading chants of Chisora’s name, Manchester’s Fury applauded Chisora for the grit his friend displayed during their third fight.
“What a warrior,” Fury told BT Sport Box Office’s Jo Ankier during his post-fight interview. “What an African-British warrior. This man has grown upon me over the years. We’ve had three epic fights, and what a tough man. You know, I was hitting him with shots there that’d knock anybody else spark out. And he stood up to every one of ‘em. And he was calling me a little b!tch in there. He was going, ‘You can hit harder than that, you little bitch!’ I was like, ‘Del, come on, mate.’ ”
The 6-foot-9, 268¾-pound Fury held Chisora when necessary and wrestled with him, but the unbeaten WBC champion picked apart Chisora with uppercuts and right hands, too. The 6-foot-1, 260¾-pound Chisora never went down, yet he took a beating and left the ring with severe swelling around his right eye.
A respectful Fury commended Chisora’s chin and willingness to continue in what devolved into pointless target practice for the heavily favored Fury.
“You know, I felt good,” Fury said. “I needed some rounds. I hadn’t boxed since April [a sixth-round knockout of Dillian Whyte]. It’s been eight or nine months since then. I’ve had a retirement. I’ve had a lot go on. And I felt good in there tonight, you know. I felt like I was landing me jab, landing some good punches. Listen, take nothing away from Dereck ‘Del Boy, War’ Chisora. He’s an absolute warrior and it’s been a privilege to fight him three times. He’s an absolute British folk hero. And he’s grew on everybody and we all love Derek Chisora.”
Chisora (33-13, 23 KOs), who will turn 39 on December 29, lost by knockout or technical knockout for the fourth time in a 15-year pro career that could come to an end after this lopsided loss. Fury (33-0-1, 24 KOs) also beat him by TKO in their rematch, which ended after the 10th round eight years ago at ExCeL London.
“You know what? Thanks to the ref,” Chisora said. “As a fighter, you don’t wanna stop. You go out on your shield. And the ref had said, ‘If you don’t [throw] more punches, I’m gonna pull you out.’ You know, thank you, Tyson. I really appreciate that. You know, me and Tyson are friends, but when the fight was done, we said, ‘You know what? Forget the friendship. He called me in the summer [and said] let me fight you.’ And I appreciate it. Thank you.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.