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Tyson Fury: “It would be an absolute dying travesty if me and Anthony Joshua don’t fight”

Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua. Photo credit: Getty Images

WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury 32-0-1 (23) has declared he is determined to face former unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua 24-3 (22) before his career is over.

The British rivals have long been linked to a fight but for various reasons negotiations have broken down.

When the fight looked close to being made last year and independent arbiter ruled the Fury was contractually obliged to face former WBC champion Deontay Wilder 43-2-1 (42) for a third time.

The 34-year-old Fury stopped Wilder in the 11th round of their trilogy fight in October last year and backed up that performance with a sixth-round knockout of long-time mandatory challenger Dillian Whyte 28-3 (19) in April.

Joshua, 33, lost his WBA, WBO and IBF titles to Ukrainian southpaw Oleksandr Usyk 20-0 (13) by unanimous decision in September last year. He did marginally better in their immediate rematch in August, dropping a split decision, but the result of those two fights took some of the shine off a potential Fury bout.

After the Whyte victory, Fury announced his retirement. But after Joshua lost to Usyk for the second time, Fury re-entered negotiations for the all-British showdown, but once again they quickly fell apart.

Instead, Fury will face gatekeeper Derek Chisora 33-12 (23) for the third time at Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium in Tottenham, England on December 3. Fury defeated Chisora by unanimous decision in 2011 and stopped him in the 10th round three years later.

Fury insists he is still keen to face Joshua before he hangs up the gloves.

“I don’t think I can retire today,” Fury said to The High Performance podcast. “Because I need that Joshua fight. We have been trying to make that fight for years. It’s the fight that people want to see. It’s the fight that I want to see as a boxing fan.

“For the last four or five years, there has been this three-headed monster: me, Wilder, Joshua. Joshua and Wilder have been slain and I’m the last one standing. All of a sudden, you’ve got some new people coming up now – Joe Joyce, Daniel Dubois, Usyk’s gate-crashed the party.

“Now there’s a load of new blood that wasn’t there five years ago and it’s like, ‘can you beat this person?’ But I think it would be an absolute dying travesty if me and Joshua didn’t fight in this era.”

Fury is also not adverse to a fourth fight with Wilder, who is coming off a first-round knockout of fellow contender Robert ‘The Nordic Nightmare’ Helenius 31-4 (20).

“Deontay Wilder is now fighting Andy Ruiz Jr for a final eliminator to fight me. Now (a fourth Wilder fight) would be amazing here at Wembley again, wouldn’t it? I’ve been over there (to the United States) three times now. If he wants the fourth fight, he’s got to come here,” Fury told BT Sport.