Eddie Hearn, promoter of Anthony Joshua, is not expecting a fight with WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury to take place on the target date of December 3 in Cardiff.
The two sides have been negotiating for several weeks, but there appears to be issues with the discussions playing out a little longer that Fury would have liked.
Fury has threatened several times to walk away from the fight and move forward with a voluntary defense against Manuel Charr.
In a recent interview, Fury’s co-promoter, Bob Arum of Top Rank, blamed Hearn for delaying the finalization of the deal.
At this point, Hearn does not believe the contest is going to take place.
“As far as we’re concerned the fight’s off. We’re happy to continue the discussions,” Hearn said to Sky Sports.
“In our mind, he’s not fighting Anthony Joshua. We’re more than happy to continue those conversations but what we’ve been told is the deadline is passed and so have the entire country. We have sent the final version of the contract back, they’ve come back with points and we were told that the fight is off by the man himself.
“They gave us terms ultimately and a date they thought we wouldn’t accept. We did accept that. We were ready to go. If they were to sign the contract on Monday, they had a fight. We were asked to agree the deal by Monday, then we were asked to agree it by Wednesday. We got the comments back on Wednesday. We were never going to sign the fight [then], and we were told the fight’s off. It’s still there. It’s still open for discussion. But we’re not going to play a game with a bloke that’s just coming out telling AJ it’s off, and then he’s a dosser, he’s got to sign it, etc. Have your fight if you fight someone else, and we’ll do our thing and we’ll see what happens.”
Joshua, a former two-time world champion, is looking to bounce back after suffering back to back decision losses to unified beltholder Oleksandr Usyk.