WBC Would Approve Oleksandr Usyk-Tyson Fury Winner to Face Anthony Joshua

Boxing Scene

The WBC has confirmed it will allow former unified world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua (28-3, 25 KOs) the opportunity to face the winner of the upcoming undisputed heavyweight title fight between Oleksandr Usyk (21-0, 14 KOs) and Tyson Fury (34-0-1, 24 KOs), who meet May 18 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

The comments from WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman come in the wake of Joshua’s destructive two-round knockout defeat of former UFC heavyweight world champion Francis Ngannou last week, a victory that saw Joshua retain his No.1 rating within the WBC’s heavyweight rankings.

Joshua’s victory was the former champion’s fourth appearance within 12 months, a stretch beginning with his April 2023 return against Jermaine Franklin in London.

The upcoming undisputed contest between Fury and Usyk is a two-fight deal, so it is thought Joshua will have to wait until 2025 if he is to face the winner. 

Also, the IBF heavyweight title is set to become vacant as soon as Fury and Usyk set foot in the ring, and the IBF is set to order Filip Hrgovic (17-0, 14 KOs) to contest the vacant title against Joshua.

But Sulaiman, speaking to Sky Sports, confirmed that Joshua would have his and the WBC’s support to face the winner of the undisputed May 18 heavyweight title affair between Usyk and Fury.

“The WBC was presented with a sanction request to fight for the undisputed,” Sulaiman told Sky Sports. “The WBC accepted that sanctioning, and we accepted the rematch they requested.

“But if it has nothing to do with contractual or promotion, we would absolutely accept the winner to fight Joshua.”

Sulaiman said the WBC would not interfere regarding the rematch clauses for the undisputed championship fight on May 18 and reaffirmed his desire to see Usyk and the WBC world titleholder fight. 

“The WBC has been very attentive to this matter [governance interference from sanctioning bodies],” Sulaiman said. “So we have completely freed the ground for the undisputed, for a rematch, and for another fight of that level.

“The WBC position right now is very open to supporting the undisputed champion taking on the fights that the fans want to see.”

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