Anthony Joshua promoter Eddie Hearn urges WBC NOT to make Tyson Fury ‘franchise’ champion and to fight his mandatory – The Sun

EDDIE HEARN has urged the WBC not to make Tyson Fury a franchise champion and let him take care of his mandatory fights.

The Gypsy King and Anthony Joshua have a two-fight deal agreed in 2021 that could determine the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.

AJ currently holds the WBO, WBA and IBF belts while Fury is the WBC champion after beating Deontay Wilder in February.

Fury, 31, still has to fulfill his contractual demands to fight the American for a third and final time before the all-important Battle of Britain.

But Dillian Whyte remains Fury's mandatory challenger and was left seething at being overlooked once again.

The 32-year-old has even sought legal advice on his position with the WBC refusing to give him his title shot.

And Matchroom promoter Hearn believes Whyte should have priority before Fury takes on Joshua.

He told Boxing Social: "We don't want the WBC to make Fury 'franchise' champion.

"Let him take care of his mandatory just like Joshua's taking care of his…

"We don't want to be elevated from 'interim' champ. He wants to fight the champion, he wants to fight Fury.

"Dillian Whyte actually has to take priority, in my opinion, over Anthony Joshua, to get that shot. We will do everything we can to deliver that."


Hearn also conceded that Joshua could be forced to face dangerous Ukrainian opponent Oleksandr Usyk after his fight with IBF mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev.

The former cruiserweight world champion, 33, may have only had one fight at the maximum weight – beating Chazz Witherspoon in October before his Dereck Chisora showdown was postponed – but is already the No1-ranked WBO challenger.

And therefore he is due a world-title shot with Joshua – or AJ could be forced to vacate the belt before facing Fury.

Hearn added: "Do we have to fight Oleksandr Usyk before? Possibly…"

Usyk's promoter Alexander Krassyuk told Sky Sports: "Usyk's WBO mandatory had to happen before AJ vs Pulev.

"But we were flexible and did not put much pressure on, allowing AJ to complete his IBF mandatory while Usyk fights Chisora.

"But this was made with regards that the WBO champ (whoever he is after AJ vs Pulev) has to make his mandatory versus Usyk.

"It means that either Joshua fights Usyk first or fights Fury without the WBO belt."

After winning gold alongside Joshua at the 2012 Olympics, Usyk is undefeated in 17 professional bouts and swept up all the cruiserweight titles before making the step up.

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