For Alexander Povetkin, the duel with Huey Fury was to be decisive for many reasons. So, a striking success in the battle with the Briton could return him to the elite of the heavy weight category, as well as make him pay attention to his opponent’s older brother, ex-world champion Tyson Fury. The defeat actually put an end to the career of the 39-year-old athlete, blocking his path not only to the third battle for the title, but also to monetary and status fights.
However, his prospects were more than vague after the defeat of Anthony Joshua. In September last year, Alexander again could not take the chance to win the championship belt, subsequently seriously thinking about ending his career. After the fight with the Briton, he himself did not give a clear answer to the question of whether he was going to continue speaking.
However, after long deliberation, he not only decided to accept the next challenge, but also to perform again in the UK. Thus, Povetkin clearly made it clear that he did not leave a chance to become a world champion and for this he was ready to fight even on a foreign land. And this taking into account the fact that from 2013 to 2017, he never once went outside the borders of his native country.
His opponent also speaks about the firmness of intentions of Povetkin. Of course, Huey Fury can hardly be called a top boxer, but during his career he has repeatedly met with high-level athletes. It is enough to recall the fights with Joseph Parker and Kubrat Pulev, which, although they did not end in his favor, lasted all 12 rounds.
In the remaining 23 fights, Fury invariably turned out to be stronger than his opponent, with 13 of them completed ahead of schedule. So, the famous British boxer Sam Sexton, as well as former world champion Samuel Peter, suffered from his hands. In the mid-2000s, the Nigerian was one of the best heavyweights on the planet and prevailed over ring stars such as James Toney and Oleg Maskaev.
In addition, on the eve of the fight, one could not forget about the age of Fury. Despite an impressive track record, at the time of the battle he was only 24 years old. The battle with the Russian could be perceived as a kind of springboard for the British, but such a status could help Alexander. If successful, he could prove that he was able to withstand the younger generation of boxers, and strengthen his position in the division.
In favor of Povetkin also said the fact that he approached the battle with Fury without any health problems. According to Andrey Ryabinsky, the head of the Boxing World promotion company, before last year's fight with Joshua, his client had serious problems with his elbows, but at the moment he was completely recovering from injuries.
Third straight bout in Britain
For Povetkin, this fight was the third in a row in the UK. Earlier, the Russian’s passage to the ring was accompanied by disapproving cries from local fans, but this time there was practically nothing like that. Of course, the fans supported their athlete, but they met Alexander quite cordially.
The first round was very difficult for Povetkin. In anticipation of the battle, he talked about the need to avoid the opponent’s jab and quickly get close to him, but he had certain difficulties with this. Fury greeted his counterpart with the help of a "shuttle", and also looked very dangerous at close range. Several times Alexander stagnated, allowing Huey to hold a pair of stiff sideways at the exit.
Subsequently, Povetkin managed to do the work on errors and skip less after exiting the clinch, but the sweeping lateral Fury continued to reach the goal. At the same time, Alexander himself began to hit, deciding to act more adventurously. He firmly occupied the center of the ring and in the corporate style began to throw powerful blows from the jump.
In the fifth round, it seemed that Povetkin began to turn in, allowing Fury to seize the initiative. Over the next three rounds, the Russian boxer missed several weighty shots at once, while he very rarely got a vis-a-vis. Huey defended himself very well and looked significantly fresher, which was not surprising, given the difference in age at 15 years.
However, the Russian Knight revived in the eighth three-minute period. He began to pass his trademark hooks, as well as multi-hit combinations, which were practically not in the first half of the battle. During the round, Alexander leveled the position in the ring, and then completely seized the initiative. Evidence of the success of the Russian was a dissection under the left eye of the Briton.
The championship rounds were held in a tense and equal fight, but without the clear advantage of one of the opponents. Povetkin continued to aggressively attack his opponent, more than once getting the right overhand in the head, and Fury answered with the left side and uppercut. At the same time, the final segment of the fight remained with the Russian, who several times felt the jaw of the brother of the Gypsy baron.
None of the rivals was able to drop an opponent, which means that the new holder of the WBA Intercontinental Champion title was determined by the decision of the judges. Given the fact that the fight took place in a sufficient competition, fans of Alexander could have doubts about the victory of the Russian boxer. However, the referee cards showed his serious superiority in the ring. All referees gave the victory to Povetkin with a score of 117: 111.
After the fight, Alexander thanked the local audience for their support and turned to his Russian fans.
"I'm very happy. It was a good, interesting fight. I would like to thank the audience, because it is very warmly received. In England they love boxing. I also want to say hello to all our Russian guys. Congratulate the whole of Russia, ”said Povetkin.