Four issues Joshua vs Fury must resolve before Battle of Britain can be confirmed, including the Wilder problem
ANTHONY JOSHUA'S epic Battle of Britain fight against Tyson Fury is one step closer after AJ beat Kubrat Pulev on December 12.
But the two men and their teams have a way to go before boxing fans can see the fight they have longed for for years.
Joshua, 31, stopped Pulev, 39, with a brutal straight right in the ninth round just moments after the Bulgarian had hauled himself off the canvas after a flurry of right upper cuts.
It was an entertaining and ill-tempered affair but fan focus immediately switched to the Fury clash after the bout.
The three-belt champ and Fury, 32, both verbally agreed a two-fight deal in the summer.
But since then, the Gypsy King decided to walk away from his trilogy bout with Deontay Wilder and saw his proposed UK homecoming axed.
And the potential third rematch with the Bronze Bomber is sticky point No1 which threatens to heed any Battle of Britain plans.
Here SunSport explores the potential issues standing in the way of the mega unification bout.
Fury knocked Wilder out in emphatic fashion back in February to win the WBC world heavyweight title.
But the Gypsy King declared the third fight was off in October.
Wilder insists he is still owed a trilogy fight with Fury.
But after Covid complications this summer, the Brit’s team insist their contract has expired.
There is talk of the Bronze Bomber taking the matter to arbitration which would see a retired judge assigned as mediator before making a legally binding ruling on the matter.
If the pair do have to meet again, the Joshua vs Fury fight will be on the back burner once again.
WBO mandatory challenger Oleksandr Usyk has already said he will not stand aside which means Joshua is obliged to fight him early next year.
Therefore, if AJ wishes to fight Fury, the Londoner could be forced to vacate the WBO belt in order to make it happen.
This would mean the Battle of Britain no longer had 'undisputed' status which poses its own problems.
Both parties are hopefull a solution can be reached but it is made difficult in the complex political arena of boxing.
Quite simple this one.
Anthony Joshua has a broadcasting deal with Sky Sports in the UK and DAZN in the USA.
And Fury is contracted to BT Sport this side of the Atlantic and ESPN stateside.
The four broadcaster rivals would have to be heavily involved in any talks and would have to agree the terms beforehand.
DATE AND VENUE
British fight fans are desperate for Joshua vs Fury to take place in the UK.
A packed Wembley stadium is a mouth watering prospect but unfortunately money talks.
It recently emerged the fighters could rake in £100MILLION each if they staged the fight in the Middle East – a far greater sum than they would pocket if the battle took place in Britain.
But with the coronavirus vaccine being rolled out across the UK, hope is not lost.
Five UK venues would likely be considered – all of them huge arenas to cope with the vast demand there would be from spectators.
Wembley Stadium, Tottenham's new ground, Cardiff's Principality Stadium, Old Trafford and the Emirates are the frontrunners.
Joshua has already sold out the 90,000 capacity Wembley Stadium when he beat Wladimir Klitschko in a thriller in 2017 to become unified champ.
But he also loved fighting in Wales and with Fury from the north of England and Joshua the south, this would play the part of a neutral 74,000 capacity venue.
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