Davison helped mastermind Fury’s return from depression and obesity and will be watching in Las Vegas for the rematch with Deontay Wilder
If Tyson Fury feels a few nervous flutters as he walks into the MGM Grand Garden arena on Saturday night for his momentous rematch with Deontay Wilder, a glance at the VIP ringside seats should be enough to settle them. Sitting there will be Ben Davison, the trainer from whom he split in December after two wildly successful years.
In that time Davison helped mastermind Fury’s return from depression and obesity to the summit of the heavyweight division; one of the reasons the pair have remained close despite parting company, and why Davison will be in attendance in Las Vegas this weekend.
“Tyson’s like a brother for me. I care for him deeply,” Davison told The Daily Telegraph. “It’ll be a very nerve-racking time for me. I want to see him succeed. I want to see him do it.”
Fury now has Detroit’s SugarHill Steward in his corner, but the shockwaves from his parting from Davison are still being felt within the boxing world.
Fury insists the reason was simple. “I wanted Ben and SugarHill Steward together but Ben didn’t want to do that,” he told The Telegraph. “That was that. He resigned. I didn’t get rid of him, Ben walked away of his own accord. But he’s got other commitments as well. He’s training Billy Joe Saunders and I’m over here [in Las Vegas] for months at a time and it’s probably worked out for the better. That’s the truth and I can’t say anymore than the truth.”
Fury insists he has nothing but gratitude for Davison, whose work with him – both inside and outside the ring – took his career to a new level, despite the trainer’s relative inexperience.
“Credit where credit’s due – he helped me come back from 28 stone down to fighting fit. He was there. The only reason I’m with SugarHill is because I need a knockout in this fight. If I was looking to nick a points win I’d have stuck with Ben. That ain’t going to win it for me here. I need a knockout. I ain’t going to get a points decision here and I am not going to be robbed again.”
Davison concurred with Fury’s account and said that it had been his decision, adding that he decided to walk away “on principle”. But that has not stopped the pair from staying in touch during the weeks of camp.
“We’ve sent a few texts but I don’t want to get into big conversations with him,” Davison said. “They’ve got a game plan and he’s got to stick with that. Hopefully I’ll see him for a minute or so before. I know he can do it.”
Davison recently made a video analysis of the first fight in his role as an analyst for BT Sport, and is hoping his former charge will heed some of his advice. But he knows the Lancastrian well enough to realise that it might be a case of having to expect the unexpected.
“Look, Tyson is a special fighter,” he said. “You can’t bet against him winning the fight by any means. You wouldn’t bet against him doing it in the second round. He’s just that type of person. If he says he’s going to do something, a lot of time he does it.
“He could knock Wilder out. It’s risky and it’s taking chances. I wouldn’t say it’s impossible for Tyson.”
Could they work together again ? “Potentially. I’ve worked with Billy Joe on and off before. He’s worked with other people.
“Potentially, I wouldn’t see why not. But let’s see. This fight, though, 100 per cent will decide the No 1 heavyweight in the world.”