Deontay Wilder has revealed what it was like meeting the Pope ahead of his rematch against Tyson Fury early next year.
Wilder is set to defend his WBC heavyweight title against ‘The Gypsy King’ on February 22 . And as he prepares for the huge fight, Wilder visited Pope Francis in Vatican City on Friday while he toured Rome.
‘Bronze Bomber’ Wilder was named the Boxers’ Representative and Ambassador for Peace through Sport by Pope Francis during a private ceremony in the Vatican. He joins Muhammad Ali and Riddick Bowe as the only American heavyweights to ever have an audience with the Pope.
Afterwards, Wilder took to social media to share his thoughts on meeting Pope Francis – and revealed how the Pontiff loves boxing and pizza. Wilder tweeted: “What a honor it was to meet the #Pope @Pontifex today. He’s truly a remarkable man that represents True Love, Happiness and World Peace for all human race.”
He then added: “He also enjoys pizza and a huge boxing fan and you know he’s apart of the #BombZquad Family Baby. Much love from me Pope Francis and I’m wishing you many many blessings your way.”
Wilder later spoke about the day, and of his plans to be “a true heavyweight champion of the world” – perhaps hinting at a fight against Anthony Joshua to unify the belts after facing Fury in February.
“This was an incredible honor and I’m very happy to have met with Pope Francis,” Wilder said. “I want to thank him for meeting with me. I also want to thank the WBC for arranging the visit and thank the Italian Boxing Federation for hosting me as I visited with the people of Italy. It has been one of the best experiences of my life. It proves that I plan on being a true heavyweight champion of the world.’’
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