ANY likelihood of Tyson Fury overlooking Tom Schwarz this Saturday (June 15) was probably extinguished when he witnessed monumental underdog Andy Ruiz Jnr produce an upset of the ages to dethrone unified world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua in New York the weekend before last. Watching a vaunted British heavyweight succumb to an unheralded rival on US soil will no doubt have sharpened Fury’s focus ahead of his own Stateside showcase. The last thing in the world he needs is for Schwarz to end up ‘doing a Ruiz’ at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas this weekend.
While no one gave Ruiz much of a hope at all against Joshua, Schwarz is an even bigger outsider against Fury, despite being ranked at No. 2 in the WBO ratings and No. 8 for the IBF. He may have 24 wins (16 early) and zero defeats, but not one of these victories have come against an adversary of real note. In April last year, the German became the first man to beat Senad Gashi – who would go on to lose to notable names in Carlos Takam and Dereck Chisora – but only by disqualification. In what was a truly bizarre affair, Gashi was thrown out in the sixth round for repeated use of the head.
Prior to being ejected, Gashi had been causing Schwarz some serious problems by legal means. The man from Magdeburg was worryingly open to Gashi’s overhand rights, with his defence being penetrated a number of times. Furthermore, Schwarz did not appear comfortable fighting on the inside, which is, of course, a place where Fury thrives with his vast size, quick hands and considerable ring smarts.