Anthony Joshua set to face Alexander Povetkin and NOT Deontay Wilder next, claims Russian's promoter

That's according to Povetkin's promoter Andrey Ryabinskiy, who thinks rules will dictate that AJ fights his man.

Povetkin is the WBA mandatory challenger, and the organisation is keen for Joshua to defend that strap next.

Ryabinskiy told Sky Sports: "I believe that Joshua will follow and cooperate with the rules of the sanctioning bodies for the titles that he holds.

"I think every fighter has to fight the best to prove that he is the best. I see no reason why Joshua would not want to fight Povetkin as his next opponent."

Ryabinskiy also pushed the ball firmly into Joshua and Matchroom's court by admitting his desire to fight in the UK.

He added: "We are happy to make the fight in England as both fighters have a lot of fans in England, there are many Russians that live in England and many who will come to England for the fight."

But Russia is also a potential location for the heavyweight title fight as well as the US.

KHAN'T DO IT Amir Khan poised to snub Kell Brook fight AGAIN

Ryabinskiy  said: "Yes, of course, it is possible [to fight Joshua in Russia]. The Luzhniki Stadium has been recently renovated, it's a legendary stadium, it has the capacity for a fight of this magnitude.

"Doing the fight in the USA is also an option."

Ryabinskiy then confirmed that talks have started with Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn.

He added: "We have started discussing the fight. [Joshua's promoter] Hearn is a very respectable promoter, we consider him our partner, and we hope that we can have a pleasant and efficient negotiations process.

"I believe that Povetkin is one of the best heavyweights in the world today.

"Joshua vs Povetkin being one of the most competitive fights in this division – it has to happen."

Source: Read Full Article