Josh Warrington confident Can Xu unification bout will still happen

Anthony Cocks

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IBF featherweight champion Josh Warrington 30-0 (7) believes his unification bout against WBA counterpart Can Xu 18-2 (3) will still go ahead, albeit at a later date.

The 29-year-old Leeds Warrior was expected to clash with China’s Xu in the northern hemisphere summer at Headingley Stadium in his hometown.

“I do believe we were at the stage where we were about to announce a fight and a date,” Warrington told Sky Sports News.

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“We talked about going to Headingley for a unification fight, so I’m hoping that can still happen.

“I know that Headingley were going to be flexible with the dates, so hopefully when all this blows over, we can get a fight date sorted later in the year.

“It’s what I’ve been screaming for the last few years. From winning the world title and defending it against some of the world’s best. I’m desperate to win another belt.

“You wrack your brains, you just keep training and plugging away, and you’re at a stage when it’s about to announce, and all of a sudden, it’s gets ripped under your feet.

“It’s a little bit frustrating, but I’ve had a little sulk, had a little bit of a moan, but I can’t get too worked up, because a lot of people are in worse off situations, worse off scenarios than myself.”

Matchroom Boxing boss Eddie Hearn said that he had reached a deal with Xu on an Instagram live with Warrington, saying: “We have agreed terms with Can Xu to have that big fight for you in the summer, hopefully. WBA ‘super’ title hopefully on the line. IBF title, probably Ring Magazine belt.”

Meanwhile, Warrington has a mandatory title defence coming up against former victim Kid Galahad, who he defeated on point in Sheffield last June.

“I just want to be part of entertaining fights,” said Warrington. “For me, once you’ve ticked a box, then you normally move forward with your career. You don’t want to be going over old ground, especially with the facts that fight wasn’t the most entertaining of fights.

“Listen, if I have to fight him again, I have to fight him again, that’s the IBF’s rulings, but like I say, at this moment in time, all I want to do is win another belt and be part of fights that people remember.”

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