Former heavyweight champion of the world Tyson Fury has rubbished claims that he will not be fit enough to take on Anthony Joshua, speaking out on Irish radio recently.
Fury did insist that it will take a few months of hard training, but that he will be ready to meet boxing's newest superstar in the ring should a fight materialise.
Fury has not fought professionally since he defeated Wladimir Klitschko in Germany two years ago, when he was crowned the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.
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In the time since his last appearance on the canvas, Fury was forced to vacate his titles after being charged by the UK Anti-Doping Agency for allegedly consuming a performance enhancing drug.
Fury, who admitted that he had been struggling with depression at the time, also had his boxing licence revoked as a result of the doping saga.
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However, Fury cut a determined figure when speaking of the work he is putting in as he makes his way back to fitness and a potentially monumental bout with Joshua. However, recent footage and photographs have shown that Fury is a distance off being where he needs to be in terms of fitness.
Speaking in a recent interview, Fury said: "The fitness is coming along good. I’m training hard and trying to lose a bit of weight at the minute, that’s the most important thing before I make the big return.
"I’ve done it all my life – I’ve had 25 fights and in 23 of them I’ve had to lose more than five stone so it’s something that’s normal to me.
"I’m a 28-year-old and it’s only a short period of time in which I get the weight off. I do the weight in about eight to ten weeks, that’s the weight gone and I can concentrate on the boxing side of things.
"So it’s not really an issue for me to be honest. If you can put the work in, then the weight will come off, it’s more of a will to do it."
Fury has never been the physical specimen that Anthony Joshua (although to be fair not many people on the planet earth can compare) and he admits as much, not considering himself to be an "athlete".
"Being a professional athlete, you should never let yourself go like I do. People will say to me, ‘you’re a professional athlete’ and I’ll say 'no, I’m a professional fighting man'.
"I’m the furthest thing from an athlete than anyone can be but I can fight, it’s what I’m good at, so I don’t really worry about the athlete side of things.
"An athlete is somehow who is fit all the time, takes the job 100% seriously, all that sort of stuff. For me, it’s not the training side of things, it’s just the fighting that I love."
The fiery Irishman is surprisingly motivated.
Having admitted in the past that he "hates boxing", it seems that the prospect of a bout with Joshua has reinvigorated the 28-year-old.
"I get turned onto the sport when I have a challenge. When people think that someone can beat me, that’s when I like boxing," he explained.
"When I beat Klitschko he was the man in the division. For 12 years he was unbeaten, took on all comers and beat them all and I beat the man who was the legend of the game and I relieved him of all his belts.
"All these so-called champions today are on champions because of me. I got all those belts off Klitschko which they could never do.
"They could never go to Germany and beat Klitschko when he was 11-years unbeaten.
"Klitschko was a broken man when he fought AJ, he was nowhere near the same man, coming off a humiliating loss."
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