- Tyson Fury was knocked to the canvas by Francis Ngannou in the third round
- Ngannou started much stronger and cut Fury’s head off in the second round
- In the third round he landed a big left hook that shocked the crowd in the arena
Francis Ngannou struck early in his fight against Tyson Fury, knocking the WBC heavyweight champion to the ground in the third round of their highly anticipated bout.
Although he won via split decision, the Gypsy King found himself in trouble after attempting to land a right hand on the MMA heavyweight, with Ngannou catching him with a massive left hook to the temple.
The 35-year-old dropped to the canvas and took a moment to recover before getting back up seconds before the end of the round.
After both fighters spent the first round training each other, Ngannou came out aggressive in the second, landing a big left hook on Fury that slashed his head.
Many questions were asked about how Ngannou would fare against the WBC heavyweight champion, considering the MMA fighter is entering the ring for the first time in his career.
Francis Ngannou knocked Tyson Fury down in the third round of their crunch fight
Ngannou emerged as a more aggressive fighter and cut Fury’s head off in the second round
But he looked compact in the early rounds and gave Fury problems by landing some heavy punches, with things not going quite the way the heavyweight champion wanted.
Fury managed a few body shots in the second and third rounds before trying to catch Ngannou with a right hand but was too slow.
The Cameroonian fighter recognized his chance to counterattack and fired powerfully at his temple with his left hand.
The British fighter went down and looked shaken but made it to the end of the round.
He looked a little shaken as he sat down in his corner during the break before the fourth round.
He found his rhythm in the fourth and fifth rounds, but Carl Frampton, speaking to TNT Sports, was horrified by the MMA fighter’s start, claiming: “I can’t believe what I’m seeing.”
‘I already have five rounds from Francis. Francis seems to be too strong for Tyson. However, he’s just starting to get a little tired. There is great concern in this corner and on Fury’s face.
“I think we have to hang our heads in shame for the little recognition we have given Ngannou. “He is punching out of his skin.”
Fury recovered and began throwing more punches at his opponent, but slowed down again in the seventh and eighth rounds as Ngannou continued to put pressure on him.
In the later rounds, Fury recovered and landed several shots on goal against his opponent.
The fight went the distance, with Ngannou’s team lifting him into the air after the fight.
The pair also hugged each other after the fight and despite all the fight talk leading up to the fight, both showed great sportsmanship.
But it was the British fighter who won the fight via a split decision and Ngannou looked very disappointed when the results were announced. Fury claimed it was “probably one of my toughest fights in the last 10 years.”
Fury looked a little dazed as he went down, but got back up to finish the round
The stadium crowd was shocked when Fury fell to the ground, but he kept going and found his rhythm in the fourth and fifth rounds
After the fight, three-time heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis said: “I thought Tyson Fury won.” He threw a lot of punches and let the jabs go. I thought Ngannou really surprised me.
“He showed really good poise and patience and you could tell he was waiting for the perfect opportunity and threw a punch that basically left Tyson off balance.”
“The basics weren’t there for Tyson – you could tell he wasn’t 100 percent.” And that was like a warm-up fight for Tyson Fury.