Eddie Hearn reveals target date for Anthony Joshua's rematch against Oleksandr Usyk

  • Tom Ward

Eddie Hearn revealed Anthony Joshua‘s rematch with Oleksandr Usyk is being targeted for May but admits he’s not sure if it will take place in the UK as ‘we’ve had offers all around the world for that fight’.

The 32-year-old London Olympics 2012 golden boy suffered a lopsided points defeat to the Ukrainian at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium last September.

Joshua activated his rematch clause a few days after Usyk ended his second reign as unified heavyweight champion.

And he will face Usyk again for the second time this summer after step-aside talks collapsed at the eleventh hour with Tyson Fury.

Talking to BBC Radio 5 Live’s Boxing podcast, Hearn also refused to rule out the possibility of the pair fighting abroad, as he confirmed that other countries have expressed interest in hosting the highly-anticipated clash.

He said: “It’s clear AJ will be fighting Usyk, which is his preferred choice.

“May is when you’ll see that fight.

“There’s the UK, America, the Middle East – we’ve had offers all around the world for that fight. I’d like to do it in the UK and we’ll see.”

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JANUARY 06: Anthony Joshua of Great Britain visits Expo 2020 Dubai on January 06, 2022 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)

Fury, 33, had reportedly offered Joshua a huge sum of money so he could fight Usyk for the undisputed championship instead.

But Hearn claims the proposed heavyweight unification fight fell through because the Gypsy King didn’t want to fight the Ukrainian without having a warm-up fight first.

Speaking to FightHype.com, he said: “Everyone talks about the step aside money and all that, the goalposts kept changing.

“The plan was always very simple. Fury fights Usyk for the undisputed, Joshua fights the winner. Very simple plan.

“Joshua never signed for that model, we were still talking. He never wanted to do it, but it became quite a smart plan, in my eyes.

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“Then Tyson Fury said ‘I’m not fighting Usyk immediately, I would like a warm-up fight on March 26’.

“I don’t trust Tyson Fury anyway to fight AJ after Usyk. I definitely don’t trust him to go March 26, June and December.

“We went back and said no to that March fight. We tried to renegotiate that whole deal and Fury said ‘no, I don’t want to fight Usyk straight away’. Then he has to fight Whyte.

“You never know if he will fight Whyte. I would not be surprised if that fight doesn’t happen.

“I see people saying ‘Dillian Whyte has gone quiet’. He’s training. Until we see a contract for that fight and they’ve paid the money, what do you expect him to do?

“This is the opportunity Dillian has wanted for a long time. He will be there, will Tyson be there? We’ll see.”

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