Anthony Joshua doubts Wilder's claim he is prepared to fight in the UK
Anthony Joshua’s team are trying to verify Deontay Wilder’s claim he is prepared to stage their world heavyweight unification clash in the UK this year.
Wilder’s co-manager Shelly Finkel claims they have accepted an offer from Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn to come to the UK in the autumn.
Finkel claims the offer includes a rematch in the US and that they are now waiting for Hearn to send them the contract to sign.
Wilder’s camp claim Hearn’s purse offer to the American WBC champ is more than the £8.8million he offered in April, but less than he would have received under the terms of his £36million offer to Joshua.
Hearn was dubious about that £36million or $50million offer to Joshua, who holds the WBA Super, IBF and WBO belts, and suspected it was a PR stunt because Team Wilder never provided proof of funds.
Hearn and the rest of Joshua’s camp also need convincing that Wilder and his team are serious about agreeing terms to fight in the UK.
They feel this may be another publicity stunt because Joshua was just about to sign to face Russian Alexander Povetkin in the mandatory for his WBA Super title.
Joshua’s camp feel this may have spooked Wilder’s camp into one last desperate throw of the dice.
The two sides are now exchanging emails and phone calls and there is a genuine desire on Joshua’s side to make the fight happen.
Finkel told website World Boxing News last night: “The story is very simple and that is Deontay Wilder today accepted the terms that Anthony Joshua’s team gave us.
“It will take place in the UK either September or October according to Eddie Hearn.
“If for any reason Anthony changes his mind and wants to fight in the US, the $50million offer we have made to him is still there. It’s now in Joshua’s court.
“Hopefully, we’ll get an answer in the next day or two. Deontay wrote to Joshua and said ‘Hey, I accept your offer, let’s fight in the UK.”
Deontay Wilder has agreed to fight Anthony Joshua in the UK in a bid to make the undisputed world heavyweight clash next.
The Bronze Bomber took to social media to put pressure on AJ and his promoter Eddie Hearn to make the fight next.
Hearn has already stated that a mandatory challenge against Alexander Povetkin could be next with Wilder straight after, but the American's concession may have ripped up the plan.
"BREAKING NEWS for all you Anthony Joshua fans," Wilder wrote on Twitter. "The $50m offer for him to fight me next in the US is still available.
"Today I even agreed to their offer to fight Joshua next in the UK. If he prefers the fight in the UK, the ball is in their court. It's up to them to choose."
Wilder owns the WBC strap, while Joshua holds the IBF, WBA Super and WBO titles.
Should the pair agree to fight, it would pave the way for the first undisputed champion in the premier division of the sport since 1999 when Lennox Lewis reigned.
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