Home Boxing News Deontay Wilder confirms offer has been made to face Anthony Joshua in...

Deontay Wilder confirms offer has been made to face Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia in December

Former WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder 43-2-1 (42) expects his proposed December bout against two-time unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua 25-3 (22) in Saudi Arabia to proceed as planned.

The 33-year-old Joshua of London is expected to return to the ring in August for a warm-up bout, possibly against Dillian Whyte 29-3 (19), before moving on to the Wilder bout.

American Wilder, 37, says negotiations for the Joshua bout are moving along apace.

“The offer is definitely out there, the discussion has been talked and it’s a real thing,” Wilder said to Mirror Fighting.

“I think it definitely is going to take place, Saudi Arabia is a beautiful place to be, even though I know they get a lot of heat on the past activities that have went on in their country.

“They understand that but at this point in time they really have changed a lot of the laws and a lot of the ways of things. They don’t need tourists, but they want to show people their country and what they have to offer so they’ve lessened up a lot on the laws over there and for me to go over to visit.

“In my first hand opinion, it was a beautiful place to be. They’re serious, they’re legit about what they’ll do and what they’re trying to do. If they do what they’re trying to do, that’s going to be the next big place to fight at.”

There have been rumours circulating that both Joshua and Wilder would receive purses around the $40 million mark for the fight.

“When you’re dealing with Saudi Arabia it’s always going to be someone’s career high out there,” Wilder explained.

“They have a lot out there and they most of all just want to show the world what they want to offer to the world and the things that they’re doing out there. They want to bring it to a safe environment and a place where you can enjoy and you can see a lot. I like the architecture and the different buildings and things like that.”

Wilder has boxed just one round since his 11th round knockout to WBC champion Tyson Fury 33-0-1 (24) in October 2021 when he knocked out fringe contender Robert Helenius 31-4 (20) in the opening frame last October.

Joshua’s last outing was a somewhat lacklustre 12-round unanimous points victory over Jermaine Franklin 21-2 (14) in April under new trainer Derrick James.

The power brokers in Saudi Arabia were trying to put together a heavyweight doubleheader that would feature Wilder-Joshua and Fury up against WBA, WBO and IBF boss Oleksandr Usyk 20-0 (13), but it seems the self-styled ‘Gypsy King’ has baulked at the idea.

“Knowing [Fury] and knowing his personality you wouldn’t be surprised,” Wilder said. “He’s one of those types of people, indecisive at times. He’s one of those people like ‘I have what I want to do’ but when it comes time to sign it up he changes up.

“So when you know him it ain’t surprising, we’ll see what happens at the end of the day but if he don’t sign it, me and Anthony will still proceed.”