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Monday, 11 April 2016

Tyson Fury wins title, stuns Wladimir Klitschko in first loss since 2004

For the first time since 2004, Wladimir Klitschko has suffered a loss. Tyson Fury claimed the WBA, IBF, IBO and WBA heavyweight championship belts with a unanimous decision (115-112, 115-112, 116-111) over Klitschko in Dusseldorf, Germany on Saturday.

The fight lacked action for the first 10 rounds, with Fury accumulating points with more activity than a lethargic Klitschko. The 6-foot-9 Fury seemed to frustrate Klitschko, who was tentative from the start and rarely threw punches, landing even fewer.

Fury switched up looks on Klitschko, going from conventional to southpaw and used head movement to keep Wladimir from letting his hands go. It seemed as though Klitschko was looking for the chance for one big punch to end the fight, but never found that opportunity.

Instead, he waited until the last two rounds to let his hands go and was unable to land anything with enough substance to stop the fight. He refused to work inside, instead just clinching and leaning on Fury rather than trying to work the body.

For Klitschko, the loss brings about plenty of questions about his future. There have been plenty of whispers about his decline for a few years and in this fight he looked generally disinterested in letting his hands go and really grinding it out with the bigger Fury.

A rematch is certainly in play -- Wladimir's team confirmed after the fight that he does have a rematch clause -- but Klitschko's retirement appears to be coming sooner than later.

If this is the final fight for Klitschko, it was a phenomenal run as a champion.

After losing to Lamon Brewster in 2004, Klitschko came back in 2005 to win the NABF and WBO NABO titles, before picking up the IBF and vacant IBO titles in a win over Chris Byrd. He beat Sultan Ibragimov in 2007 to add the WBO heavyweight title to his collection, and finally tacked on the WBA title in 2011 with a win over David Haye.

In total, Klitschko won 22 consecutive bouts from 2005 to 2015 and defended the heavyweight title 18 times in a row before relinquishing the belts on Saturday to Fury.

Father time remains undefeated, and if a fighter hangs around too long, it eventually catches up with him. On Saturday, that appeared to be the case with a weary Klitschko that got outworked by Fury.

The biggest surprise of the fight was that the referees in Germany saw the fight the same way as the viewers and announcers.

As for the most entertaining part of the bout? That would be, quite easily, Tyson Fury serenading his wife in the ring after the fight.

Fury is quite the character and said plenty of crazy things leading up to the fight -- including calling Klitschko a "devil-worshiper" -- and no matter what you say about his style or skill, he's going to be a much more entertaining heavyweight champion thank Klitschko was, for however long his reign lasts.
LSU is looking for a bounce back game against the Rebels on Saturday. (Getty Images)
Tyson Fury did enough to claim the heavyweight belts from Wladimir Klitschko on Saturday. (Getty Images)


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