Joshua looking to set up blockbuster clash with Tyson Fury to become undisputed heavyweight champion of the World
Anthony Joshua will have been eagerly watching as Tyson Fury won the WBC belt with a stunning performance that saw him stop Deontay Wilder in Vegas.
This meant a first professional loss for the former champion, in his 44 professional fight career, and he will now be looking to win his belt back in the trilogy fight against Fury.
That third fight has been confirmed and will be taking place in either June or July in the United States. Fury was so dominant in the previous fight, and will again be expected to win and all but set up a clash with Anthony Joshua. If he can do this, then he has also said this would likely be his last fight before retiring.
Anthony Joshua must now come through his next defence, which will see him taking on Kubrat Pulev in the Tottenham Hotspur stadium in London.
It has been confirmed for June 20th and will be the first defence for Joshua since winning back his belts. Most fans of the sport would argue that Joshua should breeze past his opponent, with the all of these bookies at SBO pricing the Briton at between 1/10 and 1/16 – with most in and around the 1/12 mark. Whilst they’re incredibly short prices, it just goes to show the gulf in class between the two fighters.
Joshua went up against Mexican Andy Ruiz Jr, on his first start outside of the UK. He was surprisingly beaten in Madison Square Gardens, which will also go down as one of the biggest shocks in boxing history. The pair then faced off six months later in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia.
Joshua again went into the fight as the favourite but with improvement needed, following his TKO defeat. It turned out to be a very professional performance from the former champion, as he completely outboxed Andy Ruiz and won his belts back. Joshua then became the IBO, WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight champion for the second time in his career, meaning he is, again, one step closer to becoming the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.
The victory ensured that Joshua extended his professional record to 23 wins and one loss, with 21 victories via knockout. He is also now regarded as the leading heavyweight in the sport by many, due to his record of victories over many of the sports’ top fighters.
These include names such as Dillian Whyte, Wladimir Klitschko, Joseph Parker, Alexander Povetkin and Andy Ruiz Jr, with the victory over Klitschko being the key result that really pushed him into the picture of being one of the leading fighters in the sport. He also was dropped for the first time in his career in this bout, before going on to stop the previously long-standing champion.
Joshua now goes into his contest with Kubrat Pulev, and a victory would set up for a hugely anticipated clash with Fury to become the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world – a win which would arguably see him join the likes of Mike Tyson, and most recently Lennox Lewis, as a true legend of the sport.
Both him and Fury will be expected to come through their next bouts and set up the fight, which is now the biggest fight that can be made in the sport today. It would also likely be an incredible money earner for both fighters and draw numbers similar to that of Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather in his heyday.
First Joshua must get past his defence against 38-year-old Bulgarian, Kubrat Pulev. He has long been one of the most avoided fighters in the division and is likely to pose a threat to Joshua, but Joshua will be the long odds on favourite to take the victory and knockout the Bulgarian. Pulev has a professional record of 28 wins and just one loss, the latter coming back in 2015 when stopped by the now former champion Wladimir Klitschko.
Since the defeat, Pulev has won eight fights in succession that includes a number of impressive victories. He has beaten the likes of Dereck Chisora, Kevin Johnson, Hughie Fury and most recently Rydell Booker. Pulev now enters the biggest fight of his career, as he looks to shock the world and stops the much-anticipated bout between Fury and Joshua.
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