September 28, 2021

New AJ-Fury fracas – Brit fight firmly on?

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Joshua and Fury can battle for all world heavyweight belts in 2021

By Richard Damerell

Last Updated: 28/08/20 2:16pm

Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury hold all the world heavyweight titles Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury hold all the world heavyweight titles

Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury hold all the world heavyweight titles

Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury relished the opportunity to talk up their British rivalry as they received the go-ahead for an undisputed world title clash next year.

The WBC has confirmed Fury has ‘no restrictions’ to prevent a blockbuster battle with Joshua after WBC mandatory challenger Dillian Whyte suffered a shock loss to Alexander Povetkin last weekend.

Mauricio Sulaiman, the WBC president, has revealed how Joshua was in line for a WBC title fight earlier in his career, but the governing body would still welcome a fight between their belt holder and the WBA, IBF and WBO champion.

Sulaiman told Sky Sports: “Joshua fought for the IBF title when he was WBC No 2, and he received an opportunity, so we understand and appreciate that he got an opportunity and went in a different direction, however, the WBC was the first organisation to rank him, ranking in the top 10, top five.

“We knew the value of Joshua.

“Joshua to do an ultimate unification with Wilder, if he wins, or Fury if he retains, would be magnanimous.”

Unified champion Joshua remains confident he can topple Fury, predicting how he would overpower the WBC champion during an appearance on ‘A League of Their Own.’

“First six, I know I’m going to take him out,” said Joshua. “I’ve had a shorter career, so I’m fresher. Been in the deep end longer, so I’m used to the pressure.

“I believe I’m going to handle the pressure and I’m going to take him out.”

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Joshua hopes to return in December before a potential fight with Fury

Joshua hopes to return in December before a potential fight with Fury

Referring to Fury’s win over Wilder, Joshua added: “Fury drew in the first fight. Came back rejigged all his plans and just took it to him and knew how to beat him, and just took him to school really, put him on the back foot.

“I believe I’m better than Wilder, faster, whatever you want to call it. I reckon I’m going to be doing this for another 10 years.”

Fury made a typically swift response on social media, saying: “I would batter Joshua inside the first round.”

Joshua is expected to defend his belts against IBF mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev in December.

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Sky Sports expert Carl Froch has called for a Joshua-Fury clash

Sky Sports expert Carl Froch has called for a Joshua-Fury clash

Frank Warren, Fury’s UK promoter, has stated that the unbeaten 32-year-old will return before the end of the year, preferably in a third contracted fight with Deontay Wilder, and then will target Joshua.

“Tyson wants to fight AJ and he doesn’t want anything getting in the way of that,” Warren told Sky Sports earlier this month.

“He wants to get through our contractual obligations [to Wilder], get through that fight and then get onto the fight with AJ.

“That’s the fight that matters, so if we can get Wilder out of the way, that’s then the next fight that he wants, and I want, and all the British public, and probably everybody in the world wants – is him against Anthony Joshua.”

The Brit duo urged each other to come through their next title commitments in a chance meeting in Marbella, but Joshua remains confident that he will emerge victorious when they eventually share the ring.

“I’ve got a lot of respect for the man,” Joshua told ‘A League of Their Own.’ “He’s a good man, a family man, a good fighter, but on the other hand, I’m going to break his head.”