Joshua and Fury looked like they were set to face each other in a heavyweight unification encounter in Saudi Arabia on August 14 following months of negotiations, however, an arbitration hearing ruled that Wilder had the right to a third fight with the ‘Gypsy King’.
This bout is now due to be made for July 24 and leaves AJ currently without an opponent, although it is likely to be WBO mandatory challenger and former undisputed cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk.
The Ukrainian most recently defeated Derek Chisora six months ago and has been chasing a heavyweight title shot for the past two years. AJ does, however, have the option of vacating his WBO belt to pursue another fight.
This certainly appears to be what Whyte is hoping for. The WBC mandatory challenger’s trainer Xavier Miller had initially said on his Instagram: “We want Wilder v Fury 3 winner.”
‘The Body Snatcher’ quickly replied to this post saying: “No I want AJ now next.”
Whyte had secured the WBC ‘interim’ belt back in March following his impressive victory over Alexander Povetkin, which avenged his loss to the Russian six months prior, but a title opportunity against current holder Fury is unlikely to transpire this year.
This has led to ‘The Body Snatcher’ throwing his name into the mix as one of AJ’s next possible opponents.
Indeed, despite being ordered to fight Usyk, promoter Eddie Hearn has said he would seek the best deal for Joshua with a third fight against Andy Ruiz Jr also a reported possibility, along with Luis Ortiz.
Speaking to iFL TV, Hearn said: “I wouldn’t rule out any scenario at the moment for Anthony Joshua. “We’ve probably got 10 days to decide what we’re going to do.
“If you’re going to America, he’s already messaged me, it’s like déjà vu, Andy Ruiz.
“He messaged me on Instagram and said: “I’m ready, let’s do this, AJ v Ruiz three.”
“If you’re going to America, Luis Ortiz is another guy you could fight.
“If you’re doing the UK, I don’t know… Dillian Whyte, that’s a fight to make.”