Anthony Joshua world heavyweight title plan CONFIRMED as Eddie Hearn outlines next fights

Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk have hogged the heavyweight boxing headlines in recent weeks, now it is the turn of Anthony Joshua.

AJ was ringside in Riyadh on Saturday night as Fury and Usyk put on an epic spectacle as they fought to crown the sport’s first undisputed heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis way back in 1999.

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Eventually Usyk would prevail by the closest of split decisions after a back-and-forth fight, and now both men are expected to rematch in October.

Before that though, Joshua (28-3) will again take centre stage in the sport’s marquee weight class as he looks to become a three-time world champion.

Anthony Joshua next fight

AJ is expected to headline the first massive Saudi-backed show at London’s Wembley Stadium on September 21, and there is every chance a world title will be on the line.

Anthony Joshua Eddie Hearn Day of Reckoning
Anthony Joshua talks to promoter Eddie Hearn at the press conference for his ‘Day of Reckoning’ fight vs Otto Wallin in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (Photo – Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing).

Usyk is expected to vacate the IBF title in the coming days, leaving Filip Hrgovic and Daniel Dubois to rumble for the title on that Eddie Hearn vs Frank Warren 5 on 5 show on June 1.

Then the likelihood the new champion will make their first defence against AJ on that huge Wembley bill.

READ MORE: Boxing has ANOTHER new P4P king after Fury vs Usyk classic

Hearn confirmed as much when he told Ariel Helwani’s MMA Hour: “I would say that’s the plan. The card, we’ve been talking, myself and George Warren and Spencer Brown – this trio of building fights, led by His Excellency, who will put forward his own idea of fights. That rules all of us, we help when asked.

“AJ is pencilled in to fight on that Wembley date. And it will be interesting to see what happens with the IBF belt now, because obviously when you become undisputed you have all these mandatories. It’s very difficult to get the chronological order right to defend them all. And next up is Filip Hrgovic.

“And Filip Hrgovic was supposed to get a title fight before Saturday. And the ruling was that the IBF said the winner of Fury vs Usyk must fight Hrgovic with no more exceptions. So there is a very strong chance that that belt will free up – potentially Hrgovic could even fight Dubois in the 5 v 5 coming up for the IBF world title and maybe the winner fights AJ at Wembley on September 21st.”

Filip Hrgovic vs Daniel Dubois Press Conference London April 2024 Boxing
Daniel Dubois and Filip Hrgovic face off at the press conference to announce their heavyweight bout on the June 1 Eddie Hearn vs Frank Warren card in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (Photo – Mark Robinson, Matchroom Boxing).

Fury vs Joshua? Or Usyk trilogy?

Should AJ emerge victorious as the new IBF champion late on September 21, he would again then be on the brink of meeting either Fury in that long-awaited British blockbuster OR a Usyk trilogy fight.

Hearn explained: “And then, when AJ wins that [September 21], becomes a three-time world heavyweight champion and fights the winner of Fury/Usyk, it’s for undisputed all over again.

“Honestly, anything could happen at this stage and let’s be honest, the heavyweight division on fire and so is boxing.”

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