Tyson Fury has been hailed as an inspiration by Frank Bruno following his stunning victory over Deontay Wilder in Las Vegas.
Fury won the WBC world heavyweight title after stopping Wilder to inflict the first defeat of the American’s professional career – 14 months on from their controversial draw in Los Angeles.
The vast majority of observers believed Fury was the rightful winner of that first fight, but he underlined his dominance at the MGM Grand on Saturday night with a resounding display in which he twice knocked Wilder to the canvas before the towel came in during the seventh round.
Fury battled with drugs, depression and suicidal thoughts following his shock win over Wladimir Klitschko in 2015, making his comeback to the top of the game all the more impressive.
Bruno, the former heavyweight champion, whose own struggles with mental health have been well documented, posted on Twitter: “I’m proud of Tyson Fury.
“What an inspirational man he is. To hit the lows and come back is remarkable. I hope that everybody can take something from his win.”
Attentions have already turned to Fury’s next opponent, and Anthony Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn insists he will do everything possible to set up a unification fight this year.
Fellow Briton Joshua holds the WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO titles after winning his rematch against Andy Ruiz Jr.
Hearn believes the two camps now have a once-in-a-lifetime chance to make the mega-fight happen.
“What a time for British boxing,” Hearn said on TalkSport. “To have one world heavyweight champion would be great but to have two with all the belts, we will never see it again.
“I have said and I will make this clear, we have to make this fight happen. We will never get the chance for two Brits to fight for an undisputed heavyweight world championship.
“I will promise you we will do everything we can to make this fight happen.
“The first thing is that Wilder has the rematch clause. I don’t think anyone wants to see a third fight, it was that conclusive, but we will see if he wants to exercise that.
“Our mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev is also promoted by Bob Arum, Tyson Fury’s promoter, so there is a very easy manoeuvre there if Wilder doesn’t want the rematch to go straight into this undisputed fight in the summer. That’s what we have to push for initially.
“I have already spoken to AJ – he wants this fight. He has zero fear of fighting Tyson Fury and he wants to be undisputed.”