Tim Tszyu is “living in a fantasy” and “dreaming” if he believes he can take it up to the world’s best fighters, according to his fierce rival Michael Zerafa.
Zerafa withdrew from the pair’s blockbuster fight last month at the last minute due to Covid-19 concerns but he hasn’t given up on fighting Tszyu in the future.
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Queenslander Stevie Spark replaced Zerafa at the 11th hour, but he was easily accounted for by Tszyu, who claimed afterwards he was finished fighting in Australia and turned his attention to finding an international opponent.
American Tony Harrison and Englishman Liam Smith are among the potential fighters Tszyu would like to take on next, preferably in Australia.
But the 26-year-old may have to shelve those plans given the Covid-19 outbreak in Australia shows no signs of slowing down soon.
Zerafa believes Tszyu is “living in a fantasy” with plans to fight the likes of Harrison or Smith.
“He wouldn’t last five rounds with a guy like Tony Harrison. I truly believe that. I’ve been overseas,” Zerafa told Wide World of Sports.
“He wants guys likes (Brian) Castano, (world champion Jermell) Charlo and Harrison and then there are guys in Australia that he struggled with. With guys like that Tszyu doesn’t last.
“Tszyu has been knocked down by Wade Ryan. I’m just talking like a boxing fan but I think he’s dreaming.
“I was there in front of him in Sydney he didn’t have nothing to say and then once the fight is off he wants to fight me bare knuckle. He found his balls.”
Zerafa doubts Tszyu will travel overseas for a fight and has again volunteered to fight his old foe, despite Tszyu ruling out any possibility of the pair meeting in the ring.
“They should definitely do that but they don’t want to leave Sydney,” he said.
“They want to be based in their hometown they don’t want to travel and do any of that.
“We are the next best in line in Australia. I believe we are the best but in his head I’m the next best.
“If he wants to fight the best I’m here. But make it fair. It was already a 70-30 split that we agreed on, by the end of it was 90-10.”
Zerafa also opened up on the criticism he copped for pulling out of the blockbuster fight with Tszyu, because he refused to travel from Melbourne to Newcastle due to the Covid-19 outbreak in Sydney.
“I never pulled out of the fight, I never said no, all we said was they couldn’t deliver what was promised,” he said.
“It needed time and we asked for a postponement and within two hours they replaced me with somebody else.
“What was offered eight weeks prior to the fight and what was delivered one week out of the fight were two different things.
“I wanted the fight. I’m not here to change anybody’s opinion. There’s two sides to every story. I’ve fought bigger names for less money in worse conditions. I’ve never shied away from a fight.
“Who else is he going to fight now? He’s running out of 63kg fighters.
“He doesn’t want to leave his state or step up a division, he’ll only fight guys from lower divisions so he’s running out of options. I just want to shut him up, he does my head in.”