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Tyson Fury: How WBC heavyweight champion rose to fighting Oleksandr Usyk for undisputed status

Ahead of fighting for the right to be crowned undisputed heavyweight champion, WBC title holder Tyson Fury reflects on his journey to the top of boxing; watch Tyson Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk live on Sky Sports Box Office on Saturday, May 18

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Andy Scott caught up with British heavyweight Tyson Fury ahead of his undisputed fight with Oleksandr Usyk

At 20-years-old, Tyson Fury had already declared his intention to be world champion. Now, 16 years on, he has the opportunity to do something no heavyweight has achieved for a quarter of a century.

The WBC heavyweight title holder faces WBA, WBO and IBF unified king Oleksandr Usyk in Riyadh on Saturday May 18, live on Sky Sports Box Office, in a bid to become the first undisputed champion in boxing's blue-ribband division since Lennox Lewis beat Evander Holyfield in 1999.

Watching back a video of himself talking about those ambitions at a time when he had barely a handful of professional fights under his belt, Fury is in no doubt what he would tell his younger self as he stands on the verge of making boxing history.

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Tyson Fury believes if he became undisputed champion after his fight with Oleksandr Usyk he wouldn't have experienced different types of success before

"What would I say? I think I had it all figured out, didn't I?" Fury told Sky Sports. "You're going to be world champion, yes.

"I can be world champion, be No 1 in the world, be the best and prove it - a young kid, a long time ago. I'm 36 this year so that was 16 years ago.

"I always believed, even when other people didn't, that I would be a star and make millions of dollars from fights.

"I always believed I'd be heavyweight champion, I'm the best fighter in the world. First, you've got to believe, then you've got to achieve."

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A look back at the best of Tyson Fury's memorable press conference ahead of his huge undisputed heavyweight clash with Oleksandr Usyk on May 18, live on Sky Sports Box Office

Fury, whose professional record stands at 34-0-1 (24), with the sole blemish being a draw in the first part of his epic trilogy with Deontay Wilder, has not had a simple road to the top though.

Notably, there were his two and a half years out of the ring after defeating Wladimir Klitschko to become unified champion where he was embroiled in a legal fight with UKAD, which was resolved in December 2017, and battled his own personal demons.

However, he has been in the ascendancy since his return to the ring in May 2018 and believes the good times and the bad have served to shape the fighter he is now.

"You live and learn from your experiences - nothing happens overnight," Fury said. "Back then, I wanted to fight [Wladimir] Klitschko and I did get to seven years after that.

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Ahead of the much-anticipated heavyweight clash between Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk, check out how other undisputed fights have turned out in the 21st century

"Good things come to those who wait, nothing should be rushed, and take your time because you've only got one career and you're only a young lad.

"At that time, at 20-years-old, I wanted everything yesterday."

As with all those years ago, Fury is not shy about declaring he will be the one to be crowned undisputed heavyweight champion on May 18 either.

"From a little boy, I said that and achieved it, so I've got to be one of the rare few people who dreamed something as a child and achieved it as an adult," Fury said.

"It's been amazing journey and here we are now, 16 years later, about to be undisputed champion of the world.

"The biggest fight, in the last 25 years, which is an amazing effort."

How to book Fury vs Usyk on Sky Sports Box Office

It's one of the biggest sporting events in a generation. Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk collide for the undisputed world heavyweight championship on Saturday May 18, live on Sky Sports Box Office. Book the fight now.

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