Oleksandr Usyk has signed with Skills Challenge Promotions in the hopes of setting up a fight against Tyson Fury later this year.
Usyk, 36, has been linked to an undisputed heavyweight title fight against Fury since defending his unified belts Anthony Joshua last August. The rivals looked set to meet at the end of April but a rematch clause caused a dispute in negotiations and the highly-anticipated fight fell through.
Skills Challenge are hoping to stage a blockbuster event that would feature Fury vs Usyk and potentially Deontay Wilder vs Joshua this December in Saudi Arabia. The CEO of the promotion, Amer Abdallah, revealed the signing of Usyk on Saturday after a major announcement was teased on social media.
“Skills Challenge is capable of organizing the fight with Tyson Fury, together with Alex Krassyuk and Egis Klismas,” Usyk told Seconds Out after signing with the promotion. “I don’t feel any negative towards Tyson, I will pray for him. This fight can be guaranteed by the lord, but if he hasn’t got this plan it will never happen.”
The Saudi Arabian promotion first made its mark in the boxing world by hosting Joshua’s rematch against Andy Ruiz Jr in December 2019. Skills Challenge also hosted Joshua’s second fight against Usyk last August, but the promotion’s most recent monumental event was Jake Paul vs Tommy Fury in February.
Oleksandr Usyk and Tyson Fury face off in the ring
Usyk is expected to defend his WBA world title against mandatory challenge Daniel Dubois in Poland on August 26 and the Ukrainian’s new deal with Skills Challenge will not affect the fight in any way. Fury has since mocked Usyk for taking a “50 per cent pay cut” in his upcoming title defense.
Usyk has accused Fury of being disingenuous in his efforts to fight him as he maintained his goal is to become undisputed heavyweight champion, regardless of who he fights to achieve the feat. “Our goal, and we are on the way to our goal, is to become undisputed heavyweight champion. After this, we will try make plans for the future. Before now, this is the highest priority,” he added.