OLEKSANDR USYK doesn’t even care about Tyson Fury’s WBC world title any more – he just wants to beat him up.
The 34-year-old Gypsy King turned down a mega-money Saudi Arabia offer to fight Ukraine’s WBA, IBF and WBO champ last year, to decide an undisputed ruler.
And when they tried to renegotiate for a Wembley showdown Fury made so many demands for purse splits and rematch clauses that the 36-year-old walked away and accepted on August 26 mandatory defence against Daniel Dubois instead.
London 2012 gold winner Usyk has always dreamed of replicating his four-belt cruiserweight dominance up in the blue-riband division.
But Fury will instead face MMA giant Francis Ngannou in a ten-round crossover exhibition in Saudi Arabia.
Usyk said: “I don’t think about Fury at all, I just need to meet him in the ring.
“I don’t care about the belt any more. I need him. The WBC title is just a little extra motivation but the people and the fans just need to see us fight.
“We need to fight, we need to fight. People will talk about this fight for 20, 30, 40 years so we need to have the fight.
Usyk has been called almost every possible expletive by the Morecambe showman, with “gap-toothed rabbit” the least offensive.
But the moustachioed mastermind is too cool to hurl insults when he would much prefer to throw his fists in Fury’s direction.
“He’s beautiful,” Usyk said about the undefeated 20st superstar. “He’s funny.”
Team Usyk won the purse bid and are holding the bout in the Polish city of Wroclaw, where around 200,000 Ukrainians are believed to have taken refuge from the Russian invasion.
It is the closest the southpaw can get to fighting in his ravaged homeland and it sounds like he is keener than ever to put on a show for his people, on the weekend of their annual Independence celebrations.
“I think highly of Dubois,” he grinned in traditional Cossack clothes.
“He’s a nice guy and a good athlete.
“I have all the respect for him and his team but we need to finish talking and see each other on August 26.
“I am going to destroy my enemy and bring peace.”
Dynamite Dan is a 9-1 longshot with some bookies – after losing to Joe Joyce in 2020 and getting dropped three times in the first round of his December win over unknown Kevin Lerena.
But he wants to upset the applecart and odds with a destructive changing of the guard.
“Usyk has been a great champion but the belts will come home with me,” he said.
“I need to outdo him at everything, I need to unleash hell on this guy.
“I was born for this. Everything has led to me getting here. I am different and you guys will see that.
“The bookies can say what they want, it takes the pressure off me. I am just ready to take those belts away with me back home.”