Ahead of a major heavyweight championship match next month, boxing superstar Tyson Fury said that he and his upcoming opponent are two of the strongest Christians in the sport and that whoever wins is because God ordained them to be victorious.
Fury will face Ukrainian Oleksandr Usyk on Feb. 17 in Saudi Arabia, with the winner to be named the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.
Thirty-five-year-old Fury is the World Boxing Council champion, while 37-year-old Usyk holds the World Boxing Association, International Boxing Federation and World Boxing Organization titles. All four titles will be on the line next month.
In a preview fight interview with boxing reporter Steve Bunce posted to YouTube last week, Fury spoke about his faith and that of his opponent.
"We are the two biggest Christians in boxing," said Fury. "Without failure, I can train all I want, but whoever God wants to win this fight will win. It doesn't matter if you're from the gutter or the kingdom of wherever."
"Listen, being a champion is great. But to see someone who is also a world champion and has big faith in God is unbelievable. Beautiful."
Fury has not shied away from sharing his faith in God over the years. After retaining a heavyweight boxing title in 2021 with an 11th-round knockout, Fury credited God for having "raised" him to his feet during the fourth round of his fight against fighter Deontay Wilder.
Following the fight, Wilder went to the changing rooms and was taken to the hospital for precautionary measures, while Fury stayed back to give a post-match interview.
"I would like to say thank you to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In the mighty name of Jesus, I won this fight tonight again," Fury said. "I give Him the glory; He gives me the victory."
After the 2021 match, Fury could be seen wearing a hat with the words "Jesus: El Rey Viene," a Spanish phrase that means "Jesus: the King is coming."
Fury was recognized as an undefeated champion after beating Wilder in 2019, earning him the World Boxing Council heavyweight belt.
"Deontay Wilder's a top fighter. He gave me a real run for my money. I always said I'm the best in the world, and he's second best," Fury said in his 2021 interview.
"He's got no love for me because you know why. Because I've beat him three times. And he is like, 'I'm a sportsman.' I went over to him to show some love and respect, and he didn't want to give it back. So that's his problem. I'll pray for him so God will soften his heart."
Nicole Alcindor is a reporter for The Christian Post.