- Anthony Joshua is now set to take on WBA mandatory challenger Alexander Povetkin
- Povetkin fight is likely to happen in London, with Wilder lined up early next year
- Joshua, the current WBA, IBF and WBO champion, preferred a mega bout clash with WBC holder Wilder.
Nigeria-born British boxer, Anthony Joshua is close to fighting mandatory challenger, Alexander Povetkin in three months’ time in September following a 24-hour ultimatum by the WBA to seal the deal, Daily Mail report suggests.
The 28-year-old pugilist fondly known as 'AJ' by fans are admirers, has been in unusual discussions over a possible unification bout with Deontay Wilder but, nothing serious seem to have been agreed, the report suggested that world’s heavyweight boxing champion, will sign the dotted lines to fight Povetkin.
Indeed, it was the WBA that quickened the title defence fight on Monday night, after issuing Joshua's promoter, Eddie Hearn a one day grace to arrange a fight with Povetkin or run the risk of seeing AJ lose the heavyweight belt.
Initially, the WBA allowed a 30-day negotiation window after directing the fight must hold in April, but made a U-turn after it appeared that Joshua, the current WBA, IBF and WBO champion, preferred a mega bout clash with WBC holder Wilder.
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Thus, the WBA issued another 30-days grace for the deal to be finally sealed.
Sadly, despite all the meetings that was held ahead of the bout, a fight contract dispatched to the United States of America-based Wilder in the first week of June, is yet to see the light of the day.
Thus, the fight between Joshua and Wilder is likely to be moved to February or March 2019, while AJ defends his WBA title against Povetkin in a yet to be agreed venue in September.
The UK Daily Mail report further explained that eggheads of the WBA are already set for the title defence.
“Today the WBA requested an answer from Anthony Joshua's team regarding his fight with the mandatory challenger Alexander Povetkin.
“The WBA have allowed over a month extension to negotiations with Povetkin and also ongoing discussions with Deontay Wilder.
“It appears the Wilder team have not returned the contract for the fight and therefore we are requesting a date for the Joshua v Povetkin fight with immediate effect,” WBA president Gilberto Mendoza was quoted as saying.
Interestingly, a deal with Povetkin was sealed in the first week of June, but with a clause that Wilder fight remains AJ’s top choice.
Finally, it looked like the world title will hold when the WBC champion, Wilder on June 11, declared via social media that he was set to battle Joshua in Britain.
Without wasting time, Joshua's promoter Hearn replied by dispatching a fight contract same week to Wilder, but at press time, the contract documents are yet to be signed by the WBC holder.
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com previously had reported that Joshua on Saturday night, March 31, defeated Joseph Parker in the heavyweight boxing fight in Cardiff.
However, the bout was decided by unanimous decision of the three refs after round 12 of the tough boxing fight.
Joshua and his opponent from New Zealand went into this fight unbeaten, but AJ overcame Parker who has never been down according to the commentator of the fight.
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