28
Feb
2021

Anthony Joshua gets heavyweight unification green light from WBC

Phil Jay 07/11/2020
Tyson Fury Anthony Joshua Heavyweight

Mark Robinson / Mikey Williams

World Boxing Council President Mauricio Sulaiman has confirmed Anthony Joshua can challenge for the undisputed heavyweight championship.

As reports continue to swirl regarding a possible unification battle with current WBC belt holder Tyson Fury, Sulaiman has spoken directly to AJ for the first time.

He responded to Joshua, stating his desire to fight for the coveted green and gold strap by saying: “Dear champ, your message is humbling. We are proud of you.

“The WBC was the first organization to rank you. A proud former WBC International champion.

“We welcome you to fight for the ultimate unification for the undisputed heavyweight championship,” he added.

Anthony Joshua WBC
Action Images

It was thought a ruling might come from the WBC on the top division’s current status following the collapse of a Fury vs. Deontay Wilder trilogy.

Wilder was the stipulated challenger after having a clause in the contract. The coronavirus pandemic and constant delays saw Fury move on.

Sulaiman’s words are now a clear indication that an all-British battle will get sanctioned by the World Boxing Council – if agreed for 2021.

WBC HEAVYWEIGHT STATUS

As well as Wilder, it’s also bad news for ex-mandatory Dillian Whyte and WBC interim champion Alexander Povetkin, though.

The pair meet again in January after Povetkin put an end to Whyte’s stipulated challenge for the title.

If Whyte wins, there are no guarantees he will get his shot in 2021. Fury vs. Joshua is due to be a two-fight saga – at the very least.

Therefore, Whyte or Povetkin will have to wait until 2022 to get their opportunity.


Regarding Wilder, the American seems to have blown his chance further with allegations of cheating labeled at Fury.

‘The Gypsy King’ may now do all he can to not give Wilder another shot until after Joshua and the Povetkin vs. Whyte 2 winner.

There are no alternative routes for ‘The Bronze Bomber’ – who at 35 is fast running out of time to regain a foothold at 200 pounds plus.

Where Wilder goes from here is anyone’s guess. But a drop south of heavyweight cannot be ruled out.

Harboring two-weight ambitions, Wilder could star in a new super-cruiserweight division or even make it down as far as the 200-pound limit if all weight classes remain the same.

We await an official decision once Fury secures his next opponent.

Phil Jay is Editor of WBN. An Auxiliary member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay.