Anthony Joshua vs Deontay Wilder now ‘LOCKED IN’ for December in Saudi Arabia, so long as AJ beats Dillian Whyte first

Anthony Joshua vs Deontay Wilder now ‘LOCKED IN’ for December in Saudi Arabia, so long as AJ beats Dillian Whyte first

Following productive meetings in London with Saudi reps and Wilder’s camp over the past week, AJ’s promoter said he has managed to nail down a deal for the heavyweight super fight.

However, it could all fall apart if Joshua does not win his next fight in the meantime.

On Thursday, it was officially confirmed that AJ will first fight Dillian Whyte in a rematch on August 12, knowing full well that the Wilder deal could collapse completely if he loses.

Hearn told talkSPORT: “AJ’s got the Wilder fight locked in for December. We had meetings last week with the Saudis.

“Obviously that’s one of the biggest fights in boxing, and he wanted to fight in the interim. He’s been working with Derrick James, he wanted to have that fight and he was insistent it was Dillian Whyte.

“I wasn’t over the moon because I know it’s dangerous, it’s a fight that is built off emotion, they don’t like each other.”

“You saw what happened last time at The O2, it’s going to be an absolute firefight on August 12.”

“But this is the one he wants. This is a fight that’s gonna ignite British boxing.”

Whyte hurt Joshua and gave him the first serious test of his professional career when they last fought as young pros back in 2015.

Ultimately, AJ proved his superiority with a seventh-round KO, but was undoubtedly shaken by his rival’s left hook in round two.

“That’s why it’s so dangerous,” Hearn added, “You’ve got that Deontay Wilder fight in December, he could have just waited.

“He could have just had an easy fight at The O2 – but he’s decided to roll the dice.

“He wants a fight he can get excited about.”

Pushed to clarify if Joshua vs Wilder will happen regardless of the result of the Whyte fight, the promoter answered: “No. We’ve been told categorically that the deal on the table is not the deal if he loses to Dillian Whyte.

“They didn’t want him to fight Dillian Whyte.

“It was almost like, ‘Please, don’t fight Dillian Whyte. You don’t need to. We’ve got this fight in December.’

“But AJ said, ‘No. I want to fight.’

“If he wins on August 12, he’ll go into the Deontay Wilder fight with loads of momentum and again adding to that incredible CV.

“I think he should be praised for the fact that he wants to give you a real fight instead of just a tickover fight until he fights Deontay Wilder.

“This is very dangerous.”

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