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Kubrat Pulev willing to face Anthony Joshua behind closed doors

Anthony Cocks

Australian-based boxing journalist Anthony Cocks has been covering the sport for over 15 years for various print and online publications. He refuses to believe that Roberto Duran ever lost to Tommy Hearns and says that Jeff Fenech would destroy Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee and Muhammad Ali on the same night.

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Kubrat Pulev 28-1 (14) says he is prepared to face Anthony Joshua 23-1 (21) for the unified heavyweight championship in a stadium without fans.

The 38-year-old Bulgarian is scheduled to face the WBA, IBF and WBO champion at Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium in London on June 20.

“I’m ready for June 20, July 25, whenever they say. You see what the situation is, the whole world must adjust to it,” Pulev said to the Express.

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“There’s no problem to be without spectators. Everyone would be at home, they can pay-per-view, so I don’t see any problem financially.

“The show could be a bit lost without fans but it can still happen.

“After all, it’s a world championship, which must take place.”

Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn is at odds with Pulev, saying he doesn’t want the fight to take place without fans.

“For me, boxing is unique in many ways, particularly in terms of the role that the fans play in making a fighter peak in a very important moment in their career,” Hearn said.

“I cannot see how we can stage a fight behind closed doors with no crowd.

“Can you imagine Anthony Joshua walking to fight Kubrat Pulev in front of you and me and [Sky Sports head of boxing] Adam Smith? It’s just not going to happen.

“Could you imagine Dereck Chisora fighting Oleksandr Usyk behind closed doors and laying him out with a punch from the gods and standing on the turnbuckle to see no-one?

“The crowd are so integral to the dramatic aspect of the sport of boxing, and in terms of being a TV product. For me, it’s very difficult to do it behind closed doors.”

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