Inside story of Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder dispute as Anthony Joshua fight in doubt

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Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua's fight this summer appears to be off after Deontay Wilder's arbitration case ordered that Fury must fight the American for a third time.

Former heavyweight champion Wilder was due a trilogy fight after the pair's meeting in February 2020, where Fury brutally stopped him in the seventh round after a dominant showing.

But after a prospective July date last summer was scrapped due to the coronavirus pandemic – then again didn't take place last December – team Fury moved on from the fight.

As of the time of writing, nobody involved in the promotion of Fury-Joshua has indicated that the ruling – which includes a deadline of September 15 for Fury-Wilder 3 – means that the fight is officially off.

Speaking on Wednesday morning, Frank Warren told BBC Radio that he "expects common sense to prevail".

Asked in an April interview with Behind The Gloves, Eddie Hearn said that arbitration would under no circumstances stop the Fury-Joshua bout from taking place, saying: "This arbitration is not going to lead to an injunction to stop this undisputed fight."

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It would be possible that Wilder could be paid what is commonly referred to as 'step aside money' to allow the August date to go ahead in Jeddah.

That figure is being estimated to be potentially in excess of £14million. Warren said: "We obviously have to try to reach some accommodation with Wilder. If we can't then Tyson has got to make a decision on whether he wants to fight him or not."

Indeed Hearn broached that particular topic in the aforementioned interview also, adding: "They [Fury's team] might have to do a deal with Deontay Wilder, I have no idea.

"And I know it can't stop the fight but I know it's ongoing, I don't see that as an issue."

Eddie Hearn is confident the fight between Joshua and Fury can still go ahead this summer
(Image: PA)

Wilder and Fury have of course fought twice already, with their December 2018 bout in LA controversially deemed a draw, before Fury seemingly put the rivalry to bed with a comprehensive beating in early 2020.

But there was a rematch clause in the deal for their second fight. Wilder duly exercised that just nine days after taking his first career loss on February 29.

There was a tentative date set for July 18, before worldwide coronavirus lockdowns in March saw the promoters push the event back to October.

That date also didn't happen, and Fury insisted that he would fight in December, but that bout could also not be agreed due to a variety of issues including problems with broadcasters.

There was previously an issue with Oleksandr Usyk that threatened to stop Fury-Joshua happening, as he was mandatory challenger for Joshua's WBO world title.

However, that has been settled and he appears to be preparing to face Joe Joyce later this year for an interim belt.

However, Usyk could know come back into play, with his promoter, Alexander Krassyuk, set to hold talks with Hearn.

Oleksandr Usyk
(Image: Dave Thompson Matchroom Boxing)

"The first thing I saw when I opened my eyes this morning was several texts on my phone from different people around the world stating the same fact: Fury versus AJ is off. It is off," Krassyuk told Express Sport.

"Regarding Usyk, it depends. I will speak to Eddie."

However there is no doubt that, for both sides, the priority is one another.

"Absolutely," Warren told The Daily Mail. "That is what everyone wants, what the public wants, we all want to see it.

A stadium is reportedly already being built in Jeddah for the Fury-Joshua fight.

However, the planned August 14 date for the bout now hangs in the balance.

Warren added: "At the moment we have to deal with wilder one way or another. We will work hard to make it happen to keep the fight on."

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