Dillian Whyte wouldn’t go as far as to state that Tyson Fury’s right uppercut didn’t hurt him Saturday night at Wembley Stadium.
Whyte did, however, contend during an interview Monday with Sky Sports that Fury’s subsequent shove had a dramatic impact on the outcome of their WBC heavyweight title fight in London. The 34-year-old Whyte wants to know why referee Mark Lyson didn’t give him more time to recuperate once Fury’s two-handed shove sent him crashing to the canvas and caused his head to snap back violently late in the sixth round.
The longtime London resident still beat Lyson’s count, but he stumbled when Lyson instructed him to step toward the veteran British referee. Lyson then waved an end to their 12-round title fight with one second to go in the sixth round.
“Yeah, the uppercut landed,” Whyte told Sky Sports in an interview that aired on the British sports channel Monday. “I was buzzed. But obviously, you know, when I was trying to regather my senses, then he proper, full-on pushed me like that [moved arms forward]. And I fell over and hit my head on the canvas, which is illegal. This ain’t wrestling. This is boxing. You know what I mean? But, you know, as usual, they let Fury do what he wants and get away with it. You know what I mean? I should’ve been allowed extra time to recover and then carried on fighting. You know what I mean? But and then he pushed me. Then he went and said to the referee, ‘Oh, don’t let the fight carry on.’ ”
Whyte criticized Lyson, who adamantly warned both boxers during a foul-filled fourth round, for failing to properly protect him against Fury’s rule-breaking tactics.
“It was like the referee ain’t doing his job,” Whyte said. “How can someone – OK, I got caught. No doubt about it. I got caught with a good shot. You know, obviously, I went for the left uppercut, he went for the right uppercut. He’s a bit taller than me, so obviously he landed his at range.
“I was hurt. Obviously, I didn’t go straight down. I was hurt. I was trying to get my senses together and then he full-on, two-handed pushed me. It wasn’t like a one-arm thing. He two-hand pushed me, and I fell over and hit my head. And the referee – terrible job from the referee there. But, you know, it is what it is.”
If he had been given time toward the end of the sixth round, or an entire minute between rounds, Whyte believes he could’ve recovered from that precise shot that abruptly ended their ESPN Pay-Per-View main event.
“I should’ve had time to recover, had time to go back to my corner,” Whyte said. “You know? But they, you know, I don’t know – Tyson Fury get away with a lot of things.”
Whyte (28-3, 19 KOs) lost inside the distance for the third time in almost 12 years as a pro boxer and for the second time in his past three fights. Fury (32-0-1, 23 KOs) made the second defense of the WBC belt that the 33-year-old Manchester native won when he stopped Deontay Wilder in the seventh round of their rematch in February 2020 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.