24 September 2009 – By Mark Doyle
Rising heavyweight star Tyson Fury will make his Irish debut against Czech fighter Tomas Mrazek.
Fury, whose father hails from Galway, claimed the English title with a controversial points win over John McDermott earlier this month and had been hoping that his first bout on the Emerald Isle would be for the vacant Irish strap.
However, no suitable opponent could be found, much to Fury’s disappointment. However, the undefeated 21-year-old is extremely excited about his eagerly-awaited appearance on the undercard of Bernard Dunne’s WBA super-bantamweight title defence against Poonsawat Kartingdaenggym nonetheless.
“Im very proud of my Irish roots so to fight live on terrestrial TV in Ireland (on RTE) is something Im very excited about,” Fury said ahead of the bill at The O2. “I would have loved to fight for the Irish heavyweight title on the card but I cant seem to get any of these other Irish heavyweights in the ring.
“I was ringside when Bernard Dunne won the title in March and the atmosphere that night was sensational. The O2 is a terrific arena for boxing, its like being in the Colusseum and I cant wait to walk out in front of that crowd and do a real number on Mrazek.”
Fury is also intent on impressing after turning in an underwhelming performance against McDermott a fortnight ago.
“I didnt perform to my best last time out,” he conceded. “But the important thing was that I still got the win. I know Im not the finished article yet, Ive a lot to learn but Im willing to put in the work.”
The British Boxing Board of Control have ordered a rematch but while Fury is determined to prove himself the better man once and for all, the champion’s promoter, Mick Hennessy, believes that McDermott is reluctant to agree to a second bout.
“On the Monday after the fight we offered McDermott a rematch for the chief support slot on the undercard of the Carl Froch and Andre Dirrell Super Six fight in Nottingham on October 17th McDermotts manager said he wouldnt be ready for that date but Tyson will have fought three times in that same six-week period,” he revealed.
“I dont believe Tyson is getting anything like the credit he deserves for making the leap from having only gone four rounds to going straight into a ten-round championship fight with a seasoned veteran like McDermott, who is a proven, top domestic heavyweight.
“Even though Tyson was far, far from his best on the night he showed the tenacity, guile, heart and engine to prevail in a high pace championship fight and still finish the stronger man. I believe that had it been a 12-round fight he would definitely have stopped McDermott.”