Anthony Joshua on Saturday said he wants to unify all four world heavyweight boxing titles in an all-British clash with Tyson Fury after a dominant ninth-round knockout of Bulgaria’s Kubrat Pulev at London’s Wembley Arena.
In front of 1,000 fans, with attendance limited due to COVID-19 restrictions, Joshua ensured there was no repeat of a shock defeat in his first clash with Andy Ruiz Jr last year as the 39-year-old Pulev was swatted aside.
Attention now turns to the possibility of a much-anticipated clash with WBC champion Fury next year.
“I’m up for anything. Who wants to see Anthony Joshua box Tyson Fury in 2021?” Joshua asked the crowd to a chorus of cheers. “I started this game in 2013 and I’ve been chasing the belts ever since.”
“Whoever has got the belt, I would love to compete with them. If that is Tyson Fury then let it be Tyson Fury,” he said.
Pulev had lost just once previously in his career to Wladimir Klitschko in 2014, but was outclassed by Joshua, who could have had victory wrapped up within three rounds.
Twice Pulev was given a count by the referee in round three after he was left flailing on the ropes by an explosive burst of punches from Joshua.
The IBF, WBA and WBO world champion then surprisingly took his foot off the accelerator to allow Pulev to hang in the fight.
In round nine, three uppercuts in quick succession put Pulev back on the canvas and this time he did not get back up in time as Joshua took his career record to 24-1.
An agreement in principle for Joshua and WBC champion Fury to finally go head-to-head has been in place since earlier this year.
“Starting from tomorrow, we make the Tyson Fury fight straight away. It’s the only fight to be made in boxing. It is the biggest fight in British boxing history,” said Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn.
“I know he [Joshua] wants it. He is the best heavyweight in the world, I promise you. He’ll break him down, he’ll knock him out,” he said.
Fury also confirmed he wants the fight with a post on social media shortly after Joshua’s win.
“I want the fight, I want the fight next,” said Fury, who has not been in the ring since beating Deontay Wilder in February. “I’ll knock him out inside three rounds.”
However, Fury might have a contractual obligation to fight Wilder a third time before he can take on Joshua.
After the first bout was controversially declared a draw, Wilder activated a rematch clause following Fury’s victory in the second fight.
A third clash between the two was postponed earlier this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Olivier Giroud’s bicycle-kick on Tuesday broke Atletico Madrid’s resistance and earned Chelsea a crucial away goal, a 1-0 victory giving Thomas Tuchel’s side a slender advantage in the UEFA Champions League last 16. Giroud’s acrobatic strike was initially ruled out for offside, but stood after the video assistant referee showed that Mario Hermoso had the final touch, delivering a huge blow to Atletico’s hopes of reaching the quarter-finals. Diego Simeone’s side had put on a typically disciplined defensive performance until that point, but Giroud’s moment of genius means that they must score in London on March 17 if they are to avoid
Tiger Woods has had surgery for multiple fractures of his right leg after a car accident that a Los Angeles police officer said he was “very fortunate” to have survived. The golfer was “awake and responsive” after the operation to insert a rod into his tibia and stabilize his ankle with pins, his TGR foundation said on Tuesday night. Los Angeles County Deputy Sheriff Carlos Gonzalez, the first to respond after Woods’ car went off the road in a single-vehicle accident, said that the sports star was “calm and lucid,” despite being trapped inside his vehicle. Woods was removed from the crash by
‘INTIMIDATING’: Andy Murray said that players on the ATP Tour face a difficult challenge going from semi-finals to facing 17-time Grand Slam winners in a final Naomi Osaka’s Australian Open championship moved her up one spot to No. 2 in the WTA rankings on Monday, while men’s finalist Daniil Medvedev rose to a career-best No. 3 behind winner Novak Djokovic on the ATP list as Andy Murray said that the “young guns” on the men’s tour have not closed the gap on the “Big Three.” Jennifer Brady, the 25-year-old American who was the runner-up to Osaka, jumped 11 spots to No. 13, her first time inside the top 20. Aslan Karatsev’s historic run from qualifying to the final four before losing to nine-time Australian Open champion Djokovic allowed
‘ESCAPE FROM JUSTICE’: A US gymnast who trained under Geddert for more than 10 years and was assaulted by Larry Nassar called his suicide ‘an admission of guilt’ A former US Olympics gymnastics coach with ties to disgraced sports doctor Larry Nassar on Thursday killed himself, hours after being charged with turning his Michigan gym into a hub of human trafficking by coercing girls to train and then abusing them. John Geddert faced 24 charges that could have carried years in prison had he been convicted. He was supposed to appear in an Eaton County court, near Lansing, Michigan, but his body was found at a rest area along Interstate 96, state police said. “This is a tragic end to a tragic story for everyone involved,” Michigan Attorney General Dana