Anthony Joshua says it is only right that he and Tyson Fury will meet at last in a boxing ring soon and give the British public the heavyweight fight they are so desperate to see.
Joshua has been pretty quiet about the situation since Fury announced on June 10 that the pair had agreed in in principle the financial structure for a two-fight deal, with the first bout likely taking place in the summer of 2021.
But on Thursday he was interviewed by Sky Sports News, and said: “It’s only right that me and him will bump heads soon, we’re gonna put on a great show for the British public, for the world public, it’s gonna be a massive fight, I’m looking forward to it.”
Joshua and Fury of course came face-to-face (or face to mask in Joshua’s case with COVID-19 restrictions fully obeyed) during what AJ says was absolutely a chance encounter in the Spanish resort of Marbella last weekend – and not the staged beginning of their mega promotion.
"He couldn't even get out the car and offer me a drink!" @AnthonyfJoshua on last week's chance meeting with @Tyson_Fury 👀😂 pic.twitter.com/hmmgXQ3bFY
— Sky Sports Boxing (@SkySportsBoxing) July 23, 2020
He explained: “What was cheeky about the situation is that he couldn’t even get out of the car and offer me a drink. It wasn’t planned, he was just driving down the strip, and I was walking down the strip and we just bumped into each other. I don’t know how he saw me because I had my mask on, my hat on and everything, but he’s obviously got his eye on me, he’s obviously following me around. He blew his cover! And yeah, that was it.
“All respect to him – he was with his wife as well, all respect to her as well. Humble family, and good luck to them whatever they do.”
Before AJ (23-1) can think too much about a meeting with Fury (30-0-1), he must defend his IBF, WBA and WBO world heavyweight titles against the IBF’s mandatory contender – 39-year-old Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev (28-1) – likely at London’s O2 Arena in November or December.
Fury meanwhile must face Deontay Wilder (42-1-1) in their trilogy fight, likely on Saturday December 19 at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.
Boxing’s politics mean of course that the complicated route to Fury vs Joshua may not even end there, with Fury potentially needing to undertake a mandatory WBC defence against Dillian Whyte (27-1) early next year while AJ may yet have to face the WBO mandatory, the slick former cruiserweight king Oleksandr Usyk (17-0).