Columnist Dennis Hobson’s view on Tyson Fury and the BBC

The wild man of boxing: Tyson Fury
The wild man of boxing: Tyson Fury

Nobody can knock Tyson Fury’s achievement. But given his views on social issues, is he a proper role models for young fans?

Tyson doesn’t like to be ‘run of the mill’ and sails close to the wind with some of his comments but you have to say he’s captivating. What helped win him the Klitschko fight was how he took control away mentally; that’s what he’s good at. He’s got such a strong will, but he comes out with certain things and it rubs people up the wrong way. 

Some of his comments could do with tweaking and polish but I’m a fan even though you sometimes think ‘Whoah, hold on a minute!’ Tyson has since clarified anyway by saying ‘How can I be homophobic if I have gay friends’? With regards to the ‘Sports Personality of the Year’ controversy, the BBC pulled out of boxing because the hierarchy decided they didn’t like it, probably because they’re fox-hunters or something like that. 

That’s the sort of people you’re dealing with at the BBC. The hierarchy doesn’t represent the demographic of the viewers; they’ve their own agenda and it’s their way or no way. Tyson is controversial, but so was Muhammad Ali. 

Frankie Gavin was barred from boxing until he serves 180 hours of community service: is there a need for more inspiring characters in boxing? And who are the best examples currently?

Anthony Joshua holds himself well, but you want a bit of controversy as long as it’s not taken too far. It’s a fine line, you don’t want fighters to be too disrespectful but you want them to express themselves. Chris Eubank Jr is controversial but he’s good TV. 

Someone who conducts himself very well, is exciting to watch and is a world champion is Carl Frampton. It’s a gentleman’s sport, but everyone wants to be controversial and in every pantomime you need a good baddie!  We want boxing back on free to air TV, and you need captivating characters to help do that.

How long will it be before Anthony Joshua is experienced enough to be seen as a genuine world contender?

I think challenging David Haye or Tyson Fury is a big step, but Joshua is knocking on the door. 

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