Bookies have slashed the odds on boxer Tyson Fury being awarded the BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year award in December.
Just weeks ago William Hill was offering 100/1 on Fury being given the accolade, perhaps the most prestigious in British sports. Following his courageous and skillful performance against Deontay Wilder in the early hours of Sunday morning, those odds have been cut to 5/1.
Though ringside judges scored the contest a draw, many observers thought that Fury had done enough to win. Former heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis spoke for many when he implied that the judges had been kind to the American.
This #WilderFury judging takes me back to my first fight with @holyfield Just goes to show how hard it is for a Brit to come to America and take someone’s belt even tho that’s what we clearly saw. Big up to @Tyson_Fury who never ceases to amaze me. Hold ur head high! 👊🏾💥
— Lennox Lewis (@LennoxLewis) December 2, 2018
An Extraordinary Year
Though he may have missed out on Wilder’s championship belts, last night’s performance caps a remarkable comeback for Fury. Three years ago he shocked the boxing world by beating Wladimir Klitschko, one of history’s most dominant heavyweights. The high of that night quickly turned to despair, however, as Fury spiraled into alcohol abuse, drug-taking and severe depression.
In the last year he has turned his life around, losing 10 stone of excess weight to get back to fight fitness.
Ahead of Fury in the running for Sport Personality of the Year are racing driver Lewis Hamilton at 4/1, England footballer Harry Kane at 9/4, and Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas at 7/4.
Although few would doubt Fury’s sporting achievement, his openness over some of his political views may count against him. He was last nominated for the award in 2015, when a petition was raised to strike him from the list due to allegations of misogyny and homophobia.