Tyson Fury, boxer with Romani roots, defeats Klitschko to become world champion
The boxer Tyson Fury, who is proud of his Romani roots, has just become the heavyweight champion of the world in Düsseldorf, Germany. Legendary Ukrainian boxer Wladimir Klitschko, who has not been defeated in 11 years, was defeated by Fury on points and stripped of championship belts from the WBA, WBO, IBO and IBF.
The win is the 27-year-old Fury's 25th in the professional ring. Klitschko, who is 39, was considered the clear favorite prior to the match at the Düsseldorf football stadium, but lost with all three points judges.
Fury won with a score of 115:112 from two judges and 116:111 from the third. "Today I was not the best," the Ukrainian boxer acknowledged after the fourth defeat of his career of 68 fights, his first defeat since April 2004.
"Tyson was terribly fast. I couldn't believe he could do it. I never found the right weapon to use against him," Klitschko said.
The challenger from England, who is 12 years younger, defended his undefeated record during what was his 25th bout in a professional ring. Even though during the final 12th round Fury had visibly less strength and Klitschko did his best to decide the duel, Fury had handled the preceding round significantly better than the defender.
Fury was born in Manchester into a family of Irish Travellers. His father named him after world boxing champion Mike Tyson.
Klitschko's challenger is proud of his Romani origins and has not forgotten where he comes from, even though he now lives in a big house of his own. "I am proud of who I am," he says of his heritage.
"I'm glad I'm Romani. My Traveller origins have given me determination and the will to win, to keep going until I touch rock bottom. There is no defeatism in me. Because I am a Traveller I never have any regrets. I know what I have to do and how to go on living," Fury says resolutely.
Rom or Traveller?
Travellers once represented an originally itinerant, non-Romani population whose livelihoods depended on travelling and who probably existed in the British Isles prior to the arrival of the first Roma at the beginning of the 16th century. Since the Roma and Travellers led similar lifestyles, their interdependence was deepened through mixed marriages and today they are perceived essentially as members of the same group by the majority society.
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