IT was a long and winding road to get back to virtually where he started. After working for his first 17 fights with uncle the late Hughie Fury Snr, Tyson Fury, then the undefeated British and Commonwealth heavyweight champion, was ready to move on but, after exploring a few options, he ended up back with another uncle, Peter Fury, with whom he has remained ever since. Here, he explains the story of how it happened.
“I had the hard fight with Neven Pajkic [w rsf 3] and I got dropped for the first time,” Fury recalls of the November 2011 clash. “I was boxing for money basically. I wasn’t training hard, me and Hughie was having our arguments all the time. I’d already got another trainer – Chris Johnson from America – and it wasn’t working out. He come over for a week and I didn’t really care if I won or lost. Peter said, ‘Come down, I wanna speak to you because you’re doing things all wrong. You’re jabbin all crazy over your front foot, you’re gonna get knocked out. You need to get a proper trainer.’ He advised me to go to Brendan Ingle’s gym in Sheffield.
“So we organised all that and it was two weeks before I was due to start. But it would have never ever worked. I lived in Lancaster but I was gonna be training five days a week in Sheffield, living in a hotel by meself. That was never gonna work. Peter was training Hughie as an amateur and Matthew Barney. They were both coming off a few loses. So I went to train with them while I was waiting to go to Sheffield. I knew Peter’s mentality and we’ve trained on and off with him for years. But it’d only ever last a week or 10 days then he’d be gone – France, Germany, Holland, Turkey wherever. He’d be off globetrotting, so I thought, ‘This ain’t gonna last with him.’ After two weeks I said, ‘Will you train me because we’re doing well here and I don’t wanna go down to Ingles?’ That’s that.
“He promised me that he wouldn’t run around the world and I’d be left without a trainer. We trained from January 2012 to April, losing weight. Then we had the Martin Rogan fight [w rsf 5], which I went southpaw for. I couldn’t throw a jab when me and Peter started, I was leaning forward and getting overhand-righted; I had no footwork. The only thing I had was a big heart, I was a big lump and Hughie taught me how to run the knuckles properly when I landed. We were day in, day out, working on the feet, working on the jab. I was 17-0, British and Commonwealth champion, inside the top 10 in the world, I had no footwork and I couldn’t throw a left jab. The right hand I’d throw as a hook because if I threw it straight and missed I’d fall over. We went back to zero, started from the beginning again so I’m basically a 7-0 novice. I’ve gone from having no footwork to I’d say the best in the world because I don’t know any heavyweight in history, especially a massive one, who can go 12 rounds, switching stance all the way through. That’s what Peter done.”
Peter chips in: “I still went all around the world, I just took him with me.”