That didn’t take long.
The heavyweight championship fight between Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk has been rescheduled for May 18 in Riyadh, a Saudi Arabian government spokesperson told “The MMA Hour” on Saturday.
The showdown, which had been scheduled to take place Feb. 17, was postponed Friday after Fury suffered a deep cut over his right eye in sparring.
Fury (34-0-1, 24 KOs) and Usyk (21-0, 14 KOs) were present at the announcement.
Usyk’s manager, Egis Klimas, reacted indignantly when Fury indicated that was unable to fight in two weeks because of the gash. Klimas called Fury a “f—— coward” and suggested he was looking for a way out of the fight.
However, a day later, all parties agreed to make the event happen after Fury has time to fully recover.
A photo of Fury with the cut was included on a statement posted on social media that announced the postponement.
Fury, who reportedly needed 15 stitches to close the gash, said in the statement that he was as disappointed as anyone.
“I am absolutely devastated after preparing for this fight for so long and being in such a superb condition,” he said. “I feel bad for everyone involved in this huge event and I will work diligently towards the rescheduled date once the eye has healed.
“I can only apologize to everyone affected including my own team, Team Usyk, the undercard fighters, partners, and fans as well as our hosts and my friends in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
The Fury-Usyk fight was originally scheduled for Dec. 23 but that date was pushed back after Fury narrowly avoided an upset against MMA star Francis Ngannou on Oct. 28, surviving a knockdown to win a split decision.
Fury might’ve taken victory for granted against Ngannou, who was making his boxing debut. However, that evidently wasn’t the case going into the fight with Usyk. He appeared to be in excellent shape before he suffered the cut.