Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury have signed a two-fight deal to unify the heavyweight belts, according to promoter Eddie Hearn. The plan is for both fights to take place in 2021, with the first in June or July and the rematch later in the year in November or December. A venue is yet to be decided for either fight.
Joshua’s promoter Hearn says the hard work has been done and now it is about finalising when and where the fights will be.
“We’d like to get a site deal confirmed in the next month,” Hearn told ESPN.
“The hard part is always getting everybody to put pen to paper. But this was a major effort from all parties to get this over the line. You had rival promoters, rival networks and rival fighters.
“I actually feel we’ve done the hard part.”
Hearn says he has been inundated with offers from up to nine sites to host the fight between Joshua and Fury.
He continued: “Speaking for myself, Anthony and his team at 258 management, I know how hard we’ve worked hard these last couple of months and I just feel that this fight is so big it’s not a difficult sell.
“We’ve already had approaches from eight or nine sites. The offers have come from multiple countries in the Middle East, from Asia, eastern Europe and America.
“This is the biggest fight in boxing and one of the biggest sporting events in the world.
“It will be a major, major win for a country that wants to showcase itself.”
ESPN report that the contract will call for a 50-50 split in the first fight and 60-40 in the rematch, with the winner taking the higher amount.
Only days ago Fury had told reports that he was currently not training and was taking a break from the sport.
But Hearn says Fury’s comments must be taken with a pinch of salt.
“You never really know with Tyson,” said Hearn. “It could be mind games.
“He could be having a bad day. He could be a little p***ed off. Or he could be having a joke.
“One of the fascinations about this fight will be the build-up because they’re two totally different characters, two totally different personalities.
“The mind games will be on another level for this fight. Tyson is very good at that.
“Anthony is excited by that… He’s so pumped, so focused, he hasn’t stopped training since the [Kubrat] Pulev fight [in December]. He’s like a caged lion. The buildup is going to be epic.”