Fury offers Joshua WBC title shot in “Battle of Britain” fight


Tyson Fury has thrown out a probing offer, if you will, to Anthony Joshua, looking to face his longtime media rival in a “Battle of Britain” for the WBC (and lineal!!!!!) heavyweight title by the end of the year.

It’s a surprise move, with Fury and Oleksandr Usyk the fight most want now, as Usyk has beaten Joshua two times now and he and Fury have made their challenges in the media recently.

“I think you’ve all heard that I’m going to be fighting soon, within the next few months. I think that before I announce an opponent, I need to do this, just in case,” Fury began in a statement released to social media.

“Anthony Joshua, I know you’ve just lost a fight to Usyk, and you’re beltless at the moment. I’d like to give you an opportunity to fight me for the WBC heavyweight championship of the world and the lineal championship in the next few months. You’re coming off a 12-round fight, so you’re match fit, you’re ready. I’m giving you a few months’ notice. If you’re interested, I’ll send you the date over, and we can rumble.

“A ‘Battle of Britain’ for the WBC heavyweight championship of the world. Let me know if you’re interested. If not, I will select another opponent.”

Fury’s message — which you can watch here — was delivered plain and straight, with no theatrics in his voice or demeanor.

Why would Fury (32-0-1, 23 KO) offer the fight to Joshua (24-3, 22 KO), who is coming off of two straight losses to Usyk? There are reasons.

First of all, Tyson Fury is a weirdo, and it may just be some play at annoying Usyk, or just annoying AJ and Eddie Hearn — you never really know with Tyson. The man does and says exactly as he pleases for a wide variety of reasons.

Fury vs Joshua would still be a major money fight, too, and realistically if Fury isn’t planning to hang around the sport much longer, it could be the last chance to do it. It’s not ideal, but it may be all there is.

That said, a “Battle of Britain” fight between Fury and Joshua happening “in the next few months” — Fury has indicated he’d like to fight in December — also isn’t ideal, because a December fight in a stadium in the United Kingdom is tricky. The only stadium venue with a retractable roof in the UK is Cardiff’s Principality Stadium, which is certainly big enough, with a capacity of 78,000 for boxing. Joshua fought Wladimir Klitschko there in 2017, and it would work as the venue, but whether or not the money is there to do this fight in Cardiff is another question.

If not, the “Battle of Britain” happening “in a few months” would probably have to take place in Saudi Arabia or the UAE.

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