Anthony Joshua ‘probably’ thinks Tyson Fury fight will ‘never happen’ – Eddie Hearn

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Eddie Hearn says Anthony Joshua ‘probably’ thinks a proposed heavyweight unification clash against Tyson Fury fight will ‘never happen’. The British boxers were due to clash on August 14 with all the division’s belts on the line until a judge ordered that Fury must fight Deontay Wilder first.

Joshua branded his rival “a fraud” on Twitter after their fight fell through, with an arbiration hearing having ruled that Fury had a contractual obligation to face Wilder in a trilogy rematch.

Fury inflicted Wilder’s first defeat to become WBC champion in February last year, while Joshua holds the IBF, WBA and WBO straps and has been ordered to defend the latter against mandatory challenger Oleksandr Usyk.

Joshua’s furious tweet to Fury sparked a war of words, with ‘The Gypsy King’ retaliating by challenging his fellow Brit to a bareknuckle fight.

And Joshua’s promoter Hearn says his fighter doubts whether Fury was up for the unification showdown.

“AJ never felt they wanted the fight, he never felt like Fury wanted it,” said Hearn, quoted by the BBC.

“I think AJ, in his head, probably thinks the fight will never happen. I would like to be more hopeful and I think it will happen.”

Fury, 32, will fight 35-year-old Wilder for a third time when they meet on July 24.

Joshua, 31, is expected to face Usyk at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on September 18 or 25, with talks continuing between both camps.

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And Hearn says a fight between Joshua and Fury will be “even bigger” if both men succesfully defend their belts to set up an undisputed heavyweight showdown.

“If AJ knocks out Usyk and Fury knocks out Wilder then in four months we are talking about an even bigger fight,” added Hearn.

“One could lose or look bad but I do get the feeling if they both win then the fight is huge. I am hoping it works out for the best.”

Usyk, 34, is a former undisputed world cruiserweight champion and has 18 wins from 18 bouts.

Hearn added: “AJ knows how good Usyk is but he wants to do a job on him because he also knows people are unsure about him winning the fight and I think he likes that.

“He has done four weeks of southpaw sparring up in Sheffield and he is gearing himself up for a big fight. We just hope that everywhere is open because we want to do 60-70,000 at Spurs.”

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