Anthony Joshua says an undisputed showdown towards Tyson Fury is the most important incentive heading into his rematch towards Oleksandr Usyk.
Joshua and Usyk got here face-to-face at a press convention in Saudi Arabia on Tuesday forward of their IBF, WBO and WBA heavyweight title showdown on 20 August.
The undefeated Ukrainian delivered a boxing masterclass on the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium final September to dethrone Joshua, handing him simply the second defeat of his skilled profession.
The one different time the Briton has tasted defeat was towards Andy Ruiz Jr in 2019 – heading out to Saudi Arabia to avenge that loss and reclaim his titles later that 12 months.
Joshua should do the identical towards Usyk in Jeddah this summer season – with the 2 laying the groundwork for an additional battle with an intense stare-off on stage with neither man prepared to interrupt their gaze.
Because the fighters took questions from press in attendance, the subject of Fury inevitably got here up. The WBC champion insisted after his April knockout victory over Dillian Whyte that he is now retired from boxing.
Many count on the opportunity of a battle to crown heavyweight boxing’s first undisputed heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis might be sufficient to attract ‘The Gypsy King’ out of retirement, be it towards Joshua or Usyk.
And Joshua once more opened the door to that battle. Requested if the opportunity of preventing Fury for all of the belts is the most important incentive heading into his rematch towards Usyk, he mentioned: ‘100 p.c. It needs to be. If I sat right here and informed you it’s not, I’d be mendacity to you, myself and the world.
‘For the followers it’s a must-win battle, the person’s retired however who is aware of? Retirement doesn’t imply you’re not allowed to return again.
‘I believe if the chance presents itself, we’ll see if he comes again. however let me win this battle, then one other door opens.’
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