Joshua Still Wants Tyson Fury

Anthony Joshua has refused to rule out a fight withTyson Fury despite the former champion’s battle to return to the ring.

Fury has not been in the ring since defeating Wladimir Klitschko in December 2015 to win the IBF, WBA, IBO and WBO titles. since that fight, Fury has been suspended due to a failed drug test, stripped of his license by the British Boxing Board of Control.

Fury made it more difficult to see a fight between the two when the 29 year old declared via social media that he would not reapply for his  BBBoC license.

Joshua, who defends his IBF, IBO and WBA titles against late replacement Carlos Takam in Cardiff on Saturday, has left the door open to a fight with Fury, only if the former champion can get into fighting shape.

“If he wants to fight and gets his licence at 30 or 40 stone – if he wants to get in the ring and he shows he can move about and control that weight, people will watch him.”

“But if he comes back at that weight and he’s getting into trouble against journeymen, then people won’t be interested. So it’s how he performs at his new weight.”

It is hardly surprising that Fury remains a big draw despite his well-documented problems, including a 2016 Rolling Stone interview in which he talked about habitually using cocaine, and being on the verge of alcoholism, but for the time being Joshua does not intend to deviate from his plans to unify the heavyweight titles.

A fight with WBO champion Joseph Parker, as well as a WBA mandatory before a prospective clash with reigning WBC king Deontay Wilder loom in the next 12 months.

Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn stressed his charge would not accept unreasonable demands for the sake of unifying the belts.

“We wouldn’t be held to ransom for a belt. (Kubrat) Pulev or Takam are fine for his defence of the title after Klitschko, but if it was someone like (Fres) Oquendo, we could say, ‘no-one wants to watch that fight’.

“The aim is to fight three times next year – ideally in March, April or summer then December. In a perfect world, two of the three fights would be for the additional belts – in any order.”

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