Tyson Fury’s dad John warned his fighting son against fighting Deontay Wilder – and vowed never to speak to him again if he did.
Fury made his return to the ring in 2018 following a three-year drink and drug-fuelled depression which saw him balloon to 28 stone.
But after facile victories over Sefer Seferi and Francesco Pianetta, Fury set his sights on the then heavyweight world champion.
With Anthony Joshua failing to agree terms for an undisputed fight with Wilder, Fury decided to accept the American’s challenge.
He went on to twice climb off the canvas – including in the 12th round – only to be denied victory when the judges scored the fight a draw.
But before he agreed to the bout, his dad pleaded with him to wait before testing himself at the highest level.
“He said, ‘Dad, these two are going to to and fro all day long,” John Fury said. “‘I’m going to step up to the plate and I’ll fight Wilder’.
“I said, if you do that I won’t speak to you for as long as I live because you will get hurt; you’ve just lost 10 stone in as many months, you’re not really fit at all.
“I said leave it,, you’ve had a couple of warm-up fights, you’re not there yet. Your strength ain’t there, you can’t knock a hole in a wet paper bag, where’s your sense?
“He said, ‘Dad I’m a fighting man, if I get beat I get beat; I’m going to do what Joshua’s frightened to do and step in the ring. If he beats me, he beats me, the best man will win’.
“It went from there and the rest is history; it was the best comeback of all time, who gets up in the 12th round like that?
“He was out, out cold… divine intervention I tell you.”
Fury went on to rematch Wilder in February this year and this time stopped the champion in the seventh round.
The rivals are due to meet for a third time in December with Fury also agreeing in principal to fight Joshua twice in 2021.