Hughie Fury has moved one step closer to a mandatory shot at heavyweight king Anthony Joshua following the decision by Jarrell Miller not to sign terms on a deal to face Kubrat Pulev in Bulgaria.
Miller was the next in line following Dillian Whyte’s rejection of facing Pulev in his own backyard, with his team confirming the news to WBN on Tuesday.
Promoter Dmitriy Salita lost a recent purse bid for the IBF final eliminator to Epic Sports and has since left negotiations with Pulev behind.
“Yes, we are out of the negotiation period with Kubrat Pulev,” Salita exclusively told World Boxing News.
The American was thrust into talks with Pulev just weeks after Whyte pulled out of a deal worth just under $300,000 to the WBC number one contender.
Miller, like Whyte, was not keen on the fight and British champion Fury was recently bumped up the ratings by the IBF to be the next in line.
Fury was the most significant jump on the newly released IBF Rankings upon defeating Sam Sexton for the Lonsdale Belt.
Curiously leaping above the likes of Carlos Takam and ex-opponent Joseph Parker (who defeated him last year), the move means the 23 year-old can now be considered for a new purse bid.
A stipulated clash, if accepted and agreed, will see the winner of Pulev v Fury gain a mandatory shot at Joshua in 2019 or potentially 2020 if a deal with Deontay Wilder comes to fruition for ‘AJ’.
Fury is the highest profile name available to Pulev as Carlos Takam is ranked at six but is tied into a fight with Dereck Chisora, whilst Parker (facing Whyte this month) himself is then seventh.
The once-beat cousin of Tyson Fury may well fancy the job as he bids to make a name for himself and push closer to another chance after losing out to Parker on points in Manchester last September.
Barring Fury taking the spot opposite Pulev, Team Sauerland (his promoters) would have to look further down the ratings to the likes of Agit Kabayel, the European champion or even their own Otto Wallin.
More will be revealed soon as Fury and his representatives contemplate their next move.