Dillian Whyte made sure to remind all there are two men headlining at Wembley on April 23 as he explained his media silence ahead of this month’s all-British title fight against Tyson Fury.
The WBC mandatory challenger elected against attending last month’s ticket launch event and had been silent on social media until earlier this week when he posted on Instagram.
It beckons as a long-awaited title shot for the Brixton man, who knocked out Alexander Povetkin in the fourth round of their rematch last month to set up a showdown with Fury.
“This is a business,” Whyte told reporters. “It’s not the Tyson Fury show. Everybody saying Tyson Fury this, Tyson Fury that. This fight sold out because of me and Tyson Fury, Tyson Fury fought Wilder, he’s a big superstar. It’s not just the Tyson Fury show, it’s the Tyson Fury and Dillian Whyte show so some things need to be done correctly.
“I don’t dance to nobody’s tune, I’m a warrior, we can dance together but it can’t be one-way traffic.
“I’m a disciplined guy and I’ve learned to be disciplined over the years. Okay, you want me to do things? That’s cool, I’m up for that, I’m a professional, I’ve had six or seven pay-per-view shows and worked hard on all of them and looked after my opponents and dealt with them correctly.
“When these guys are trying to mug me off and treat me like it’s the Tyson Fury show, they’ve got to get certain things correct. I’m a professional at the end of the day, so here I am. I’m here and ready.”
Whyte cited previous occasions in which a potential fight with Fury failed to come to fruition as a reason for choosing not to speak in the build-up to this month’s clash.
“You make an agreement to get the ball rolling, but there are still underlying issues that need securing and sorting out, and then when people are trying to play games and messing around then you’ve got to control what you can control,” he added.”
“What I could control is my actions, not what Fury does. So that’s what I did.”
Now that it has arrived, Whyte says it would mean “everything” to him to become champion of the world.
“I’m a guy that as a kid, no future, no education, no family, I’m a survivor,” he said.
“I’ve been on the streets since I was a child. For somebody like me that’s come from nothing, I’ve come from no sporting background, no backing, no support, I didn’t even do sports at school. For somebody like me to come from where I’ve come from, and to be heavyweight champion of the world is true inspiration.
“That’s somebody that’s come from a boxing family. I was a thug on the street that could knock people out. I’m under no illusion, I know what I am, I know what I bring.”
Fury: I’ll be Saint Tyson!
Fury is back in action for the first time since retaining his WBC belt with an 11th-round knockout win to cap his thrilling trilogy against Deontay Wilder in October.
The 33-year-old previously suggested he would retire from boxing after his fight against Whyte, though insisted on Thursday that he is looking no further than defending his belts upon his return to British soil.
“To be honest with you I am only thinking about Dillian Whyte, I am not thinking about retirement,” he said. “That will come after the fight, we will think about what will happen and what the future will hold for me.
“At the minute I have a massive task in Dillian. A lot of people are underestimating Dillian Whyte but not me. I am giving him the respect he deserves throughout the training camp.
“I am not underestimating this guy, I give him the respect like I did for Deontay Wilder and everyone else.”
It marks the Brit’s first fight in the UK since 2018, with a 94,000 attendance at Wembley due to make history as the biggest for a single fight in Europe.
“What I’ve heard is that after this fight they’re going to make me patron saint of England, it’s going to be Saint Tyson instead of Saint George!” he joked.
Fury, who labelled Whyte as a top five heavyweight in the world, referred to his mental health journey in recent years and underlined his intent to enjoy every moment in the ring.
“I’m obsessed with time and moments in time,” he said. “I’ve got to take every second as a blessing. I’ve been blessed to be at this stage in my career and life.
“Once it’s passed you can never turn the clock back, so I enjoy it. I like to enjoy every second in that ring. I wished they would do a fight for a full day long. I’m really happy when I’m in the boxing ring getting thumped in the face!”