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Home » Anthony Joshua closes in on IBF title offer versus Filip Hrgovic

Anthony Joshua closes in on IBF title offer versus Filip Hrgovic

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Anthony Joshua is on the verge of receiving an offer to fight Filip Hrgovic as the next contender in line for a crack at the interim IBF title.

As World Boxing News reported first, AJ is close to landing the secondary heavyweight title shot and may be able to compete for the strap he won in 2016 as quickly as this summer.

The former two-time world champion is the next in line after Ruiz and Wilder in the IBF ranking. Therefore, he’s in for a shock opportunity at the vacant interim red strap against Hrgovic.

This is due to Andy Ruiz Jr. pulling out of purse bids on Thursday.

Anthony Joshua vs Filip Hrgovic

Joshua could also earn a shot at the full title against Hrgovic. However, he is ironically relying on Tyson Fury to get this unexpected chance at becoming a three-time heavyweight titleholder.

The Londoner needs Fury to beat Oleksandr Usyk in the spring. If he does and relinquishes as promised, the IBF would move to sanction a clash with Hrgovic for the ultimate crown.

Fury has vowed to relinquish the IBF belt if he ever wins it again. “The Gypsy King” stated he doesn’t want to hold it again, even for one day.

He certainly won’t pay the sanctioning fees, meaning when he fights Usyk, the undisputed crown may only be on the line for the Ukrainian.

Hrgovic is the mandatory challenger and will get the first opportunity. The IBF will then sift down the ratings to offer the fight to the next contender.

IBF rankings

The IBF doesn’t have a current number two. And with Deontay Wilder and Ruiz at three and four ordered for a WBC eliminator, Daryl Peoples [IBF Chairman] must go to number five for a summer blockbuster.

That happens to be Joshua. So with AJ and Hrgovic fighting under the Matchroom banner, an amicable in-house world heavyweight title clash would be most welcome.

A UK venue would be likely for the late summer.

Joshua will have a warm-up first against Jermaine Franklin. He’ll then keep a firm eye on Fury vs Usyk to see if his title shot will be interim or full against Hrgovic.

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