Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury have agreed to face each other not once, but twice, after successful talks between both camps, promoter Eddie Hearn revealed yesterday.
Discussions over a mouthwatering Battle of Britain, which would see all four major world heavyweight titles on the line, have been ongoing for months. And now Hearn, who represents Joshua, has confirmed that the financial elements of a mega-money two-fight deal have finally been agreed.
Saudi Arabia (5/4) is the early favourite with the bookmakers to host the fight, ahead of Las Vegas (2/1) and then Wembley (5/1).
“We’re making great progress,’ Joshua’s promoter Hearn told Sky Sports News. “There is still a lot to overcome. We are looking at venues and dates.
“We have the Dillian Whyte mandatory which is due before this fight.
“It’s fair to say [Joshua and Fury] are in agreement regarding the financial terms of the fight.
“We’ve been talking to [Fury’s management team] MTK, giving them the assurances from Joshua’s side that all the details on the structure of the deal are approved from our side. And it is from Fury’s side, as well.
“We’re in a good place. It’s fair to say that, in principle, both guys have agreed to that fight. Two fights.
“A lot to overcome in the meantime. We’re moving in the right direction. I’m confident that both guys have to give their blessing for the fight to go ahead.’
A showdown between the British heavyweights has been talked about for years, but scheduling and contractual issues have so far prevented it from happening.
Hearn, however, is confident that contracts will be finalised early next year, with the pair going head-to-head for the first time in the summer of 2021.
He added: “The point of Fury, Joshua and the teams agreeing to the structure of the deal? The first fight could happen next summer. It will be 2021.
“There is a big period of time where Whyte should get his shot at the title. That’s important to us.
“The main positive news is that Joshua and Fury have agreed to a two-fight deal, in essence.
“The most difficult part of any deal is the financial element. I believe we’re in a great place where both guys have agreed to what that should be.
“We have not signed contracts because there are still things to be worked out. We’re pushing towards a place where they can be drafted, for 2021.
“Both guys are in agreement. The structure of the deal has been put forward and agreed to by both parties.
“There is a model in place that both parties are happy with.”
Joshua, who is currently recovering from a knee injury, faces a rearranged defence of his IBF, WBA and WBO titles against Kubrat Pulev and must also get through a rematch with old rival Whyte by February of next year before he can take on Fury.
Culled from dailymail.co.uk