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Povetkin demands threaten Joshua v Wilder undisputed fight

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As WBN mentioned yesterday, Povetkin being left out of the thinking for Joshua’s next bout could have repercussions with the WBO and WBA.


Povetkin is the mandatory challenger with both organisations, which means promoter Andriy Ryabinskiy is in a strong position in the bargaining stakes.

Should Ryabinskiy and Povetkin lobby for their opportunity and push the WBO and WBA to make a decision, Joshua may be left with no choice.

“I’m the mandatory challenger for Joshua. I look forward to the moment when I can compete against the best in the world,” said Povetkin.

“Anthony has four belts. I want this fight and I don’t even think about fighting someone else,” he added.

The WBC and IBF have a policy which sees a unification override any mandatory challenger, something Wilder will have to hope can also be the case with the WBO and WBA this time around.

Failing that, Joshua and Wilder’s promoters may have to dig deep into their pockets to give Povetkin an incentive to step aside to allow the mega-fight to happen.

Another big stumbling block is the rematch clause as both Joshua and Wilder are hoping to agree TWO BOUTS, leaving Povetkin out in the cold for up to A YEAR or more.

It might be easier for Joshua to get the Povetkin mandatory out of the way in the summer before a meeting with Wilder at the end of 2018.

Problems may further arise from the IBF’s decision to order a final eliminator between Dillian Whyte and Kubrat Pulev as the winner of that fight will be expecting their own shot in the months that follow.

As thing stand, there’s a mass of complications hampering the Joshua v Wilder situation, with the WBA, WBO and IBF all needing to agree a stay of execution for the heavyweight king in order to allow a five-belt battle to go ahead for the fans.

Phil Jay is Editor of World Boxing News. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay