On Saturday evening, millions of eyes around the world gazed up at TV screens as Anthony Joshua extended his undefeated status and became the new IBF heavyweight world champion.
Fans from every corner of the globe rejoiced as the charming boxer from Watford claimed a somewhat controversial second round knockout, making it a perfect 16 fights, 16 knockouts, on his professional record.
However, as many are already comparing Joshua to the likes of Muhammad Ali and Mike Tyson, it must be said that Joshua seems to have had a very easy ride to the top.
To put it frankly, as a boxing enthusiast, I personally hadn’t heard of any of Joshua’s opponents whatsoever until his fight against journeyman boxer, Kevin Johnson, who was 35 when they fought last year.
Even Joshua’s title fight over the weekend was against a ‘champion’ who had been crowned the IBF heavyweight champ after his opponent, Glazkov, had to retire from the fight with a knee injury.
Maybe I’m wrong, but it seems like AJ has gotten incredibly lucky just to get this far. But, according to new statements, we may soon see his talents put to the test.
Enter Tyson Fury.
The loud-mouthed, charismatic, and massively controversial heavyweight champion of the world, who holds the lineal, WBA, WBO, IBO and The Ring titles, and may very shortly be stepping foot into the ring with AJ.
Fury wasn’t shy about posting his opinions of AJ all over social media:
So AJ gets a belt, looked slow ponderous, & still looked like a bodybuilder, let me slay the lamb
— GYPSYKING (@Tyson_Fury) April 9, 2016Advertisement
Buzzing for the fans now as we are gurentee for some big heavyweight fights!! Best to heavyweights in world, furys,🖕 pic.twitter.com/FqJle80WAw
— GYPSYKING (@Tyson_Fury) April 9, 2016
But after losing a grand on the fight, and referring to Joshua as ‘slow, ponderous’ and like a ‘bodybuilder’, AJ quickly replied, stating:
Regarding Tyson Fury – he’s got his own dates set. July 9th with Klitschko. He’s got a rematch. So, let him get that out of the way. I can’t really predict his plans, but I think it will happen within the next 12 months, because I said around six months ago it’ll happen in 18 months.
As Fury prepares to defend his title for the first time in a contracted rematch against Wladimir Klitschko in Manchester on July 9, it would appear that a Joshua fight is very likely to be on the cards in the next 12 months.
Speaking to Sky Sports, AJ’s promoter Eddie Hearn added to the speculation saying:
Tyson Fury is our pick before that because he has got the belts, the other two belts, and I think a unification fight has to be a priority. Haye against Joshua is a massive fight, probably realistically next spring or summer but Fury could be one for 2016.
The winner of that fight, it would seem, could be expecting a fight against Deontay Wilder to become the unified heavyweight champion of the world.
Meanwhile in the heavyweight world, David Haye – who has also been rumoured as a near future opponent for Joshua – continues in his attempts to convince us all that he’s still in the game with the second fight of his comeback against yet another relatively unknown boxer, Arnold ‘The Kobra’ Gjergjaj.
Give it up Dave, would you?