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Tyson Fury says undisputed heavyweight clash is ‘D-Day’ for him and Oleksandr Usyk as they won’t be able to compete in another era | World News

This weekend’s undisputed heavyweight clash is “D-Day” for both fighters, Tyson Fury has warned, as he renewed his verbal feud with his opponent.

The British boxer is set to face off against Ukrainian Oleksandr Usyk at the Kingdom Arena in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on Saturday.

While he had nothing but praise for his boxing, ahead of the estimated $240m clash, he restated that he regarded Usyk as “an ugly little rabbit dosser”.

The long-awaited fight will see the unbeaten rivals face each other for the first time as well as an undisputed champion crowned for the first time since 1999.

The fight was originally scheduled for February, but had to be pushed back after Fury suffered a “freak” cut on his face.

With the fight just a few days away, tensions have ratcheted up after an incident at a hotel during a media day this week saw Fury’s dad, John Fury, appear to headbutt a member of Usyk’s entourage.

Speaking to Sky News’s Jacquie Beltrao, Fury said that the fight was his and Usyk’s “D-Day” due to their age.

He said: “I think we’ll find out on Saturday whose destiny it is, mine or his.

“We both can’t have the destiny of being the undisputed in this era, and we won’t be young enough to go into another era undisputed.

“So it’s D-Day for both fighters.”

Fury spoke out ahead of the fight this weekend
Fury spoke out ahead of the fight this weekend

Boxing - Tyson Fury v Oleksandr Usyk - Press Conference - HERE at Outernet, London, Britain - November 16, 2023 Oleksandr Usyk and Tyson Fury face off during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Couldridge
Fury and Usyk square off in a press conference. Pic: Reuters

‘Another day at the office’

However, despite the gravity of the event, Fury said he was unbothered by the pressure and described it as “just another day in the office”.

Having already achieved his childhood ambition of becoming heavyweight champion of the world, Fury said he had been “riding the wave of that” ever since.

Fury said: “For me, it’s just another day in the office, I’m here to get paid… and go home.

“It’s never been about belts and all that sort of stuff, all that sort of stuff is based on someone else’s opinion.

“For me it’s about getting my money, going home, walking the dog, doing the school run, just being left alone really.

“I’m not interested in going into movies and having a successful career after boxing.”

However, he had a few choice words for his opponent, Usyk, despite describing him as a “good fighter” and “accomplished boxer”.

“I’ve never said Usyk isn’t a good boxer, I’ve called him an ugly little rabbit dosser. That’s what I’ve called him. But I’ve never said his boxing was bad,” Fury told Sky News.

However, Fury admitted his days fighting in the UK were likely behind him – due to what he claimed were the lengthy delays getting a bout organised and off the ground in his home country.

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Tyson Fury’s dad clashes with Usyk’s team

Despite Fury’s strong words, Usyk has claimed he isn’t being drawn on anything said this week.

“I’m doing good, I’m happy and I’m hungry. I don’t care how Tyson will be this week. I’m ready,” he said.

He continued: “For me 18 May is important, what Tyson does in the press conferences doesn’t matter.”

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How to watch the fight

Ring walks for the main fight are expected to take place at 11pm on 18 May, with coverage of the build-up starting at 4pm on Sky Sports Box Office.

Two hours of the undercard are also available on Sky Sports Action from 4pm.

The main event will be shown live on Sky Sports Box Office and Sky Sports Box Office HD.

The event is £24.95 for Sky customers in the UK and €27.95 for Sky (and Virgin Media) customers in the Republic of Ireland.

Schools won’t be allowed to teach children that they can change their gender ID, reports say | Politics News

Teachers in English schools will not be allowed to teach children that they can change their gender identity, according to reports.

Age limits are also set to be imposed for the first time on when children can be taught sex education.

The Times reports that education ministers will warn schools in England today that gender identity is “highly contested” and that teaching the issue could have “damaging implications”.

If asked, school staff should teach the “biological facts” about sex, the government will say, The Times adds.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has become concerned gender identity is becoming “embedded” in schools as an uncontested fact, the newspaper says.

Under other proposals, schools will be told not to teach children any form of sex education until year 5, when pupils are aged nine.

The plans will also rule out any explicit conversations about sex until the age of 13, The Times report also says.

Thirteen would also be the age threshold for pupils to be taught about contraception, sexually transmitted infections, and abortion.

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The new guidance is reportedly part of the government’s response to concerns children are receiving age-inappropriate relationships, sex and health education (RSHE).

Schools will reportedly be required to provide parents with samples of the material their children will be taught.

RSHE became compulsory in all English schools in September 2020.

The existing guidance outlines broad lesson modules, stating primary school children should be taught about alternative types of families and healthy relationships.

Secondary-school-aged children are taught more complex topics, including puberty, sexual relationships, consent, unsafe relationships, and online harms.

The Department for Education said it could not confirm the newspaper reports, and that it would not speculate on leaks.

Christmas babies: Twins born weeks early but won’t share same birthday | UK News

A couple have received the ultimate Christmas present after their twins arrived four weeks early – but they won’t share the same birthday.

Adeeqa Ali and her partner Faisal Imran from Livingston, Scotland, went to hospital on Christmas Eve, nearly a month ahead of the expected due date.

Baby boy Jami and twin sister Rumi were both born within an hour of each other, but not on the same day.

Jami was born at 11.44pm on Christmas Eve, while his sister was delivered at 12.27am on Christmas Day.

Staff said the pair will remain with their mother in hospital for a few days but should be out by Hogmanay – New Year celebrated in the Scottish way.

Rumi came within minutes of being the first Christmas baby in Scotland, but Aberdeen’s Eliza Shearer took that accolade.

Maja and Jason Shearer rushed to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary on Christmas Eve as Eliza made an appearance a few days before she was due at 12.18 on Christmas Day.

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Mr Shearer said it was “touch and go” whether she would be born before or after midnight.

He described the quick change of plans with Mrs Shearer’s parents, who came over from Poland, having to host the traditional Christmas Eve celebration without the expectant parents at home.

He said: “Maja’s Polish, so we celebrate Christmas on Christmas Eve and British Christmas on Christmas Day.

“Maja’s folks are over just now so they had to host Christmas dinner without us last night because we’re here, and they’ll probably get a nice Christmas dinner again today.”

The new father also thanked the midwifery staff at the hospital, who he said had been “absolutely amazing”.

Schools won’t have to pay to fix crumbling concrete, minister says | Politics News

Schools affected by collapse-risk concrete will not have to pay for repairs out of their budgets, the education secretary has insisted.

Gillian Keegan told Sky News there will be no new money to fix the problem, but the costs will be covered by the Department for Education (DfE)..

There has been a growing row over who will pay to pick up the bill for repairs to reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) after the government announced last week that more than 100 schools would have to close or partially close because of the risks associated with it.

Politics Live: Speculation grows over Labour reshuffle today

Ms Keegan said ministers had already procured stock of portable cabins for schools that need temporary accommodation – and the DfE is paying for this “directly”.

She said: “We have eight structural surveying firms who go in and do the surveys.

“We have three portacabin providers, so we’ve laid up a stock of portacabins so that people can be prepared quickly to be able to do that if they need temporary accommodation. And we’ve also looked at a propping company that’s nationwide.

“The Department for Education will pay for all of that.”

Ms Keegan could not say how much funding would be ringfenced towards the issue but admitted it was likely to cost “many, many millions of pounds” – as some schools will have to be rebuilt.

Asked if schools that are already strapped for cash will have to find more money, Ms Keegan insisted: “No, we will pay for that.”

Asked if the money will come out of school budgets, Ms Keegan said: “No. It’s coming out of the Department for Education.”

On Sunday Chancellor Jeremy Hunt said he would “spend what it takes” to address the problem, but Treasury sources later said money for repairs would come from the Department for Education’s (DfE) existing capital budget.

The government is facing pressure to “get a grip” on the issue after admitting more schools may have to close once more surveys are complete.

Thangam Debbonaire, the shadow leader of the House of Commons, told Sky News the full scale of the problem is still unknown and ministers must “come clean to parents, staff and pupils” and publish the full list of schools affected.

Hosepipe ban extended in Cornwall and Devon and won’t be lifted until December ‘without drought-breaking rainfall’ | UK News

A hosepipe ban has been extended to include more of Cornwall and parts of Devon as the region continues to experience lower than average levels of rainfall.

South West Water said it was taking action to “break the cycle of drought”, with reservoir levels falling to their lowest recorded level last year and some water storage already lower than this time in 2022.

It said it hoped the ban would be lifted on 1 December “or sooner”, if the area received “drought-breaking rainfall”.

In a statement on its website, it said said: “Our water resources across the region remain under pressure and as we go into the summer period we have taken the necessary action to safeguard supplies and break the cycle of drought following lower than average levels of rainfall last year and throughout February.”

Kyle Walker: Manchester City and England footballer won’t face criminal charge over alleged indecent exposure | UK News

Kyle Walker will not face a criminal charge over an allegation that he indecently exposed himself in a bar, police have confirmed.

The Manchester City and England footballer voluntarily attended a police station for questioning on Thursday following the circulation of a video on social media.

The alleged incident was said to have happened in a bar in Wilmslow, Cheshire, after City’s 2-0 Premier League win over Newcastle earlier this month.

Cheshire Police confirmed Walker was given an out of court disposal – meaning he won’t face a criminal charge – and “the matter is now closed”.

In a statement on Friday, the force told Sky News: “On Wednesday 8 March, Cheshire Constabulary was made aware of a video circulating on social media in relation to an alleged incident at a bar in the Wilmslow area.

“Officers have now concluded their enquiries which included speaking to those directly involved.

“A 32-year-old man from Prestbury voluntarily attended a police station for questioning on 16 March.

“He has been dealt with by an out of court disposal and the matter is now closed.”

This result wasn’t just bad for the Tories, it was terrible. While they won’t admit it, they know it was | Politics News

A couple of hours before the result of the West Lancashire by-election was declared shortly before 2am, senior Tories at the count were prepared for the worst.

Privately, they were predicting a 60% share of the vote for Labour and 25% for the Conservatives.

They weren’t far wrong. The Tory vote has indeed slumped from over 36% at the 2019 general election to about 25%. But Labour’s share was higher than the Tories feared, above 62%.

That was a bigger share for Labour and smaller for the Conservatives in this constituency than in Tony Blair’s landslide general election victory in 1997.

After the result, Bill Esterson – Labour MP for the neighbouring seat of Sefton Central – took great delight in pointing that out.

For the Tories, Blackpool South MP Scott Benton told Sky News in a combative interview that the result here wasn’t good enough for Labour to send Sir Keir Starmer to Downing Street at the next general election.

In her victory speech, the winning Labour candidate Ashley Dalton – resplendent in a bright red trouser suit – said it was time for a general election. But there isn’t going to be one for at least 18 months.

Rishi Sunak’s Conservatives may be languishing on around 25% in national opinion polls – coincidentally about the same as their vote share in this by-election – but the government consistently wins votes in the Commons by comfortable majorities of about 60.

That doesn’t mean Mr Sunak isn’t in a perilous position, however. A trouncing at the local elections on May 4 similar to this by-election result will send many Tory MPs into a blind panic and plunge the PM’s future into real danger.

Pic: Twitter
The by-election was sparked by Rosie Cooper’s resignation. Pic: Twitter

Amid the latest run of dismal by-election results and the prospect of a drubbing in May, Mr Sunak’s tenure in No 10 is made all the more vulnerable by the resurgent threats posed by his two predecessors, Boris Johnson and Liz Truss, with Mr Johnson undermining him in military aid to Ukraine and Ms Truss leading a renewed charge for tax cuts in Jeremy Hunt’s Budget on 15 March.

As for West Lancashire, it has a new MP who on the evidence of this morning – in her victory speech and subsequent interview with Sky News – will be a powerful and extremely vocal advocate for the constituency.

She highlighted the problems in the NHS, the cost of living crisis and transport issues as her top priorities when she arrives at Westminster after parliament’s half-term recess in 10 days’ time.

On transport, for example, the new town of Skelmersdale in the constituency has no railway station – and locals here complain that it’s a long and frustrating bus journey to Liverpool.

There had long been plans to rebuild a train station, but the government rejected these plans last year – a move West Lancashire’s previous MP, Rosie Cooper, described as a “cruel joke”.

Health, cost of living and transport – issues that are currently dominating politics nationally and were also the predominant issues in this by-election campaign.

Read more analysis:
A worrying trend is emerging for Tories in by-elections

That suggests they are the main reason the Tories are haemorrhaging votes. Add to that the Tory sleaze and bullying allegations, “partygate” and the perception that the Conservatives are out of touch after 13 years in power – all of which we heard from Labour in West Lancashire – no wonder Sir Keir’s cheerleaders are cock-a-hoop about the result in this by-election.

And, despite the brave face put on this crushing defeat publicly by the Tories, the slump in votes here will privately fill many Conservative MPs with gloom and alarm.

No doubt those Tory predictions two hours before the result were intended to manage expectations in their party’s favour. But it didn’t work and this result wasn’t just bad for the Conservatives. It was terrible. And while they won’t admit it, they know it was.

World Cup 2022: Kyle Walker won’t ‘roll out the red carpet’ for Kylian Mbappe in England v France quarter-final | UK News

Kyle Walker has said he won’t “roll out the red carpet” for Kylian Mbappe during England’s clash with France.

The Three Lions defender looks set to be faced with containing the Paris Saint-Germain superstar during Saturday’s quarter-final.

Mbappe has scored five goals and leads the race for the golden boot in Qatar with many speculating how England will try to hold him off.

Walker, a Manchester City right-back, has said he is ready for the challenge and told a press conference: “We respect that he is a good player in good form, but I am not going to roll out a red carpet for him and tell him to go and score.

“I’m representing my country at the quarter-final of a World Cup, it’s do or die really. If we lose, we go home. He’s not going to stand in my way of hopefully winning a World Cup for my country.”

“I do understand what I need to do and that is to stop him,” he added.

“It’s probably easier said than done, but I don’t underestimate myself. I have played against a lot of great players at Man City and England.

“I have to treat it as another game, I have to take extra care and give him the respect he deserves, but not too much respect because he’s also playing England and we can cause them problems.”

Walker has come up against Mbappe four times in the Champions League and has earned plaudits for how he has previously dealt with the French forward.

“Obviously it is always going to help because I’ve played against him a number of times now with Manchester City,” added Walker.

“He is a fantastic player in great form. It is not going to be an easy task, but as a professional footballer you want to play against the best and I think he is one of the best if not the best in the world at the moment.”

Declan Rice in Qatar
Declan Rice missed training through illness on Wednesday

Further up the pitch, concern has been raised regarding England’s midfield after Declan Rice missed training through illness.

The West Ham midfielder wasn’t present for training with the rest of squad on Wednesday, just three days ahead of the clash with France.

Other players who missed training include striker Callum Wilson, who has yet to return to training after picking up a muscle problem following the last-16 win over Senegal, Raheem Sterling, who returned to the UK after intruders broke into his home, and Ben White, who left Qatar for personal reasons last week.