by Dane McGuire
With Tyson Fury having shifted focus from Anthony Joshua to a Deontay Wilder trilogy fight, now rescheduled for Oct. 9 after a COVID-19 outbreak in Fury’s camp, Anthony Joshua will now defend his three heavyweight belts against Oleksandr Usyk Sept. 25 in London.
“The date is set and we are fully locked in,” Joshua said. “September 25, Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, I put it all on the line again and it’s time to defend my crown. We are two Olympic Gold medalists who have fought our way to the top and never avoided challenges.”
Usyk is the WBO mandatory title challenger. Announced Tuesday, the bout will go down at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
“The stadium is exceptional, the atmosphere will be electric,” Joshua said. “I’m honored to be the first person to fight in such an awe-inspiring venue. The stage is set and I am ready to handle business.”
A bout between Fury and Joshua had been announced to take place in Saudi Arabia in August prior to an arbitrator’s ruling Fury must face Wilder. The trilogy bout between Fury and Wilder was to take place July 24 prior to the COVID-19 outbreak.
“The most important fight for me is the next one but you have to have a vision of where you want to get to. I have to stay consistent and stay ready. Once I fight Usyk, who knows what will happen next,” Joshua told Sky Sports recently.
“Will I fight Fury, Wilder, Dillian Whyte, Andy Ruiz, Luis Ortiz? Who knows.I have to stay on track and ready for each fight, but have a long-term plan. It’s about the belts, not the person. I don’t mind who it is. I want to fight for legacy,” he added.
Joshua (24-1, 22 KOs) will be making his second defense since regaining his belts from Andy Ruiz Jr. in December 2019. He last fought in December, when he stopped Kubrat Pulev in nine rounds,BoxingJunkie.com reported.
BoxingJunkie notes Usyk (18-0, 13 KOS) is the former undisputed cruiserweight champion. He is 2-0 as a heavyweight, including a unanimous decision over Derek Chisora in October.
Sky Sports reported with Wilder-Fury 3 going down in October, the much-discussed Fury-Joshua bout would have to wait until 2022
No other details about the Joshua-Usyk fight card are known at this time including the number of fans that might be in attendance amid the ongoing pandemic, but Boxing Junkie reported Tottenham Hotspur Stadium holds around 62,000 for soccer.