Anthony Joshua has admitted the decision to vacate one of his world titles is out of his hands.
The British heavyweight reclaimed the belts he lost to Andy Ruiz earlier this month and holds the IBF, WBA (Super) and WBO titles. Joshua is lining up his next fight, but the IBF and WBO have both ordered him to fight their mandatory challengers next, leaving one belt in danger of being vacated.
‘I would hate [to vacate a belt] because it’s so hard to go round and collect all these belts, it’s really difficult and I’ve kept hold of them for so many years. So to have to vacate because of the boxing politics would be annoying, but there’s things that are out of my control. If I do lose one, I know I’ll be able to get it back.
‘Time moves so fast, it’s easy to forget things. So we just look forward into the new year and more challenges, more competition and hopefully more memorable years to come. It’s 2020 vision. Whoever’s on the cards will get taken down. I just keep myself focused and whoever wants it can get it.’
Kubrat Pulev is the IBF’s mandatory and is the frontrunner to face Joshua next in April. Joshua shares a promoter with the WBO’s No.1 challenger, Oleksandr Usyk, and Eddie Hearn is hopeful he agree terms with the Ukrainian to postpone his clash with AJ until the end of 2020.
It is likely Joshua’s mandatory obligations will take up his entire fight calendar in 2020, putting off any unification clash with Deontay Wilder, or Tyson Fury should he win their rematch, for at least another 12 months.
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