Hughie Fury title fight at tragedy-hit Manchester Arena
Hughie Fury will bid to emulate troubled cousin Tyson Fury and become a heavyweight world boxing champion, as it was confirmed on Friday he will fight New Zealand’s WBO titleholder Joseph Parker on September 23.
It will be a doubly emotionally-charged night as the title fight will be at the Manchester Arena, where a suicide bomber blew himself up on May 22 after the end of an Ariana Grande concert resulting in 22 dead and scores injured.
The 22-year-old Hughie, who like Tyson faces a hearing with UK-Anti Doping over allegations they tested positive for the steroid nandrolone in 2015, said he would prove the sceptics wrong.
“I’ve waited so long for this chance and my team has worked very hard to get me this fight and I’d like to thank everyone involved,” said Fury.
“I’m going to shock the world and prove all my doubters wrong and what better place to do it than in my home city of Manchester.
“Parker is a good fighter and I’ve no doubt we’ll both bring our A-game on fight night. I can’t wait to be crowned world champion.”
The undefeated Fury has a fight lined-up next Saturday; his last combat was against Fred Kassi in April 2016.
He had been due to fight Parker on May 6th this year in New Zealand but had to pull out of the title challenge because of a back injury.
Parker, whose record reads 23 wins in 23 bouts with 18 knock-outs, said he wasn’t intimidated by having to fight on his challenger’s home turf.
“Fighting away from home holds no fears for me. I will arrive having previously fought on the undercard of a Wladimir Klitschko world title fight in Germany and also twice in America.
“I believe that with so many Kiwis and Samoans living in the UK, I may even have more supporters in the crowd on fight night than Hughie Fury.”
Fury, who has a record of 20 wins with 10 inside the distance, had spoken in late May of his desire to bring some cheer to Manchester in the wake of the terror attack.
“My hope is that fighting in front of Manchester fans for the world title would help give the city some light after the darkness,” said Fury, who has never fought in Manchester.
“But even though I’m a fighter and go into the ring and take punches, the real heroes are the victims’ families who will now have to show incredible bravery to carry on with their everyday lives.
“The one thing that has really showed me the love and compassion of the people in the city, is how they have all pulled together in this terrible time.”