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Eddie Hearn confirms Anthony Joshua's likely opponent for world title fight in 2024

Chris Byfield

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Eddie Hearn confirms Anthony Joshua's likely opponent for world title fight in 2024

Eddie Hearn confirmed Anthony Joshua’s probably opponent for a world title fight in 2024.

On Saturday, Joshua delivered one of his best performances in years, beating opponent Otto Wallin in five rounds to make it three wins from three this year.

Just before Joshua’s crushing victory however, Denotay Wilder, who has claimed 42 of his 43 career wins by knockout and is considered one of boxing’s hardest-ever punchers, slumped to a surprise defeat to New Zealand’s Joseph Parker.

The doubleheader in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, was expected to set up a clash between Wilder and Joshua in March, but such a prospect appears unlikely after the Bronze Bomber’s surprise loss.

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The defeat also opens the door to a Filip Hrgovic bout and the chance for Joshua to become a three-time world heavyweight champion.

Hrgovic is the mandatory challenger for Oleksandr Usyk’s IBF belt that will be defended when the Ukrainian finally meets Tyson Fury in February.

But the winner of said bout will likely have to vacate the IBF title ahead of a potential rematch.

With Joshua now set to take the No2 spot in the rankings, he seems to be on a collision course with Hrgovic, who moved to 17-0 with his emphatic first-round knockout of Mark de Mori on Saturday's undercard.

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When discussing Joshua’s next steps, Hearn told TNT Sports: "It was a tough decision between the championship and Deontay Wilder. We signed for Deontay Wilder, he lost tonight.

"That's okay, that happens in boxing. But maybe it's a blessing because really this guy [Joshua] is about championships.

"He wants to become a three-time heavyweight world champion. Now Otto Wallin was number two in the division, it's gonna be Hrgovic against AJ for the world title.

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"I'm so happy to see him smiling and performing so well. He's a dangerous, dangerous man when he's in that kind of mood. 2024 is going to be very interesting.

Every heavyweight should be on notice. He's back."

Hearn later said: "I would love to see him fight Tyson Fury. If Tyson Fury can beat Oleksandr Usyk, I would love to see him fight Tyson Fury. I love that fight.

"I hope that Tyson can be triumphant in that fight. We'll go away now and obviously coming into tonight we had our plans for March.

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"Now we've got to re-assess. Does he want to fight in March? We'll speak to [trainer] Ben [Davison], I know he'll want to stay active I think.

"I think he's in a wonderful position. I think that was a statement to say he's the man, he's the man to watch in 2024."

Featured Image Credit: Getty

Topics: Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder, Eddie Hearn, Boxing

Chris Byfield
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