Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder have targeted a rematch after they thrillingly fought to a draw in their WBC heavyweight title fight at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
The 33-year-old Wilder effectively retained his title in the dramatic final round with the second of two knockdowns, one so heavy Fury appeared out cold before remarkably returning to his feet.
A rematch appeared inevitable even before it was controversially announced a draw via scores of 115-111, 114-112 and 113-113 and owing to his classy, gutsy performance as he outboxed the champion, Fury would surely be the favourite.
Tyson Fury recovered from a 12th-round knockdown (Lionel Hahn/PA)
Unusually since Anthony Joshua’s victory over Wladimir Klitschko, the IBF, WBA and WBO champion would be at risk of being overlooked as the division’s leading attraction, and discussing the inevitable rematch, Fury said: “One hundred percent we’ll do it.
“We are two great champions. Me and this man are the two best heavyweights on the planet.
“We’re on away soil, I got knocked down twice, but I still believe I won that fight. I’m being a total professional here. I went to Germany to fight Klitschko and I went to America to fight Deontay Wilder. God bless America. The ‘Gypsy King’ has returned.
“I hope I did you all proud after nearly three years out of the ring. I was never going to be knocked out. I showed good heart to get up. I came here and I fought my heart out.
“I’m what you call a pro athlete that loves to box. I don’t know anyone on the planet that can move like that. That man is a fearsome puncher and I was able to avoid that. The world knows I won the fight.
“I’ve been away from my family for 10 weeks. I’m just going to spend some time with my family. (It’s) well deserved.”
America’s Wilder, who like Fury had previously won each of his professional fights and was the lighter of the two by 42lbs, also argued that he had deserved the decision but he said: “I would love for (a rematch) to be my next fight. Why not?
Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury’s bout was scored a draw (Lionel Hahn/PA)
“Let’s give the fans what they want to see. It was a great fight and let’s do it again. It doesn’t matter to me where we do it.
“With the two knockdowns I definitely won. We poured our hearts out. We’re both warriors, but with those two drops I won the fight. I came out slow. I rushed my punches. I didn’t sit still. I was too hesitant. I started overthrowing the right hand and I just couldn’t adjust.
“I was rushing my punches. That’s something I usually don’t do. I couldn’t let it go. I was forcing my punches too much instead of sitting back being patient and waiting for it. I really wanted to get him out of there, give the fans what they want to see.
“When I rush my punches like that I’m never accurate. The rematch I guarantee I’m going to get him.
“We’re the two best in the world and we proved it. When you get two warriors you get a great fight. I’m ready to do it again.”