Unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua is already booked for a title-retention bid this April 13 at the Wembley Stadium. But the question up to now is: who is going to be his challenger?
Negotiations are already underway, and according to Eddie Hearn, at least four boxers have been given an offer to share the ring with the 29-year old champion. But among these four heavyweights, Tyson Fury could likely end up as AJ’s challenger for the IBF, WBA, WBO, and IBO titles, as per his boxing promoter.
Talks about a potential Wilder-Joshua clash have been circulating online after Hearn revealed last month that it was the only fight AJ wants. But the boxing promoter told Sky Sports News on Monday that the Bronze Bomber’s camp has not been responding to any of their proposals.
“Well, to say Deontay Wilder’s camp has gone quiet, that’s saying it lightly. Probably up to six unanswered emails now. In fact, I sent one a couple of days ago, saying I just want to check these haven’t gone into your Spam items.”
“It is frustrating because you walk out there on the street ‘When’s he going to fight Deontay Wilder?’ It’s like, whenever they want it, but sometimes the public wants to believe a fighter on Instagram all day. If they wanted the fight, they would talk to me. They’re not even talking to us. We’ve made offers, we’ve made percentage splits. Everything we can do, to try and make that fight.”
Wilder is coming off a controversial split decision draw with Tyson Fury. The two tussled at the Staples Arena in Los Angeles last month, with the WBC heavyweight championship serving as the main prize. Following a classic match, which put the heavyweight division in the spotlight, the WBC sanctioned a direct rematch between the pair due to “tremendous popular demand” from fans.
The second instalment to the Wilder and Fury rivalry could be put on hold as Hearn claimed that the lineal heavyweight champion has more chance of facing Joshua at Wembley.
“I think right now, there’s more chance of fighting Tyson Fury. There’s a man that knows he can have this fight if he wants it. I’ve spoken to him. He knows if he wants to fight Joshua, it can happen April 13.”
Aside from Fury and Wilder, Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller and Dillian Whyte are also being targeted for the Wembley fight, and Hearn is hoping that one of these four boxers would sign the deal before the month ends.
“It’s almost like a race against time, particularly for those three, Wilder, Fury and Whyte. They’ve all had offers, they could all sign now today, and get the fight. But do they want the fight? I believe the offers, some have been made, some are about to be improved, it’s put up or shut up time.
“You want to win these four title belts, you believe you can beat Anthony Joshua, then let’s go, but everyone wants to negotiate, and rightly so.”
Watch the full interview in the video below:
(Featured Image Source: Instagram/Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury)