Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury 'Direct Rematch' Fight Sanctioned by WBC

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistDecember 7, 2018

FILE - In this Dec. 1, 2018, file photo, Tyson Fury, right, of England, connects with Deontay Wilder during a WBC heavyweight championship boxing match in Los Angeles. Wilder is still frustrated by the way he fought in his draw with Fury. The WBC heavyweight champion watched a replay of the fight for the first time Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018, and saw things he did incorrectly. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill, File)
Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

The WBC has sanctioned a "direct" rematch between current heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury. 

The two fought out a controversial draw on Saturday, December 1. Per BBC Sport the WBC announced there was "unanimous agreement"  to sanction the rematch.

The statement also said the rematch will take into account the mandatory status of the division:

"Wilder and Fury gave boxing one of the best fights in the heavyweight division in a long time, which has created tremendous popular demand for the fans to see a rematch.

"The WBC is happy to confirm a direct rematch has been approved and will create in a ruling which will also consider the mandatory status of the division."

Wilder defended his title in Los Angeles and scored two knockdowns, but most fans and analysts believed Fury had decisively won the fight, per BBC Sport. The scorecards told a different story, however, with all three judges arriving at a different conclusion:

The result caused plenty of outrage, not in the least from Fury himself. Per the BBC, he said he had "never seen a worse decision in my life." Wilder, on the other hand, questioned whether the Gypsy King beat the count in the 12th round.

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An immediate rematch seemed inevitable. Similar to the first meeting between Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin, the controversial decision on Saturday means there's a strong appetite to see the Bronze Bomber and Gypsy King go at it again.

Both men are undefeated and are two of the three biggest names in the heavyweight division. WBA, WBO and IBF champion Anthony Joshua is without an opponent, but promoter Frank Warren believes his next defence will be against cruiserweight star Oleksandr Usyk in April, per the Daily Star's Chris McKenna

Usyk increased his profile in the UK by stopping Tony Bellew in November and his long-awaited move to heavyweight couldn't come at a better time. With a win over Joshua he could put himself in position to chase the lineal title against the winner of the rematch between Fury and Wilder.