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Fury versus Joshua 'has to happen this year', says Hearn

By Christopher Devine

Las Vegas, February 23: Anthony Joshua's promoter, Eddie Hearn, says a unification fight between his fighter and Tyson Fury "has to happen this year" after the latter produced a phenomenal performance to dethrone Deontay Wilder.

In a much-anticipated rematch in Las Vegas, Fury knocked the previously undefeated Wilder down twice and won via TKO in the seventh round when the American's corner threw in the towel.

Fury now holds the WBC heavyweight strap, just over four years after he sensationally beat Wladimir Klitschko to become a world champion for the first time.

The other major belts in the division belong to Joshua, who avenged his shock loss to Andy Ruiz Jr. in December, and Hearn feels the two Britons must now meet in 2020.

Responding to a Twitter user who wrote, "Not a chance Eddie Hearn is letting Joshua anywhere near Tyson now," the promoter replied: "Of course I am! And AJ wants it bad..this fight is gonna and has to happen this year!"

Wilder now has 30 days to demand a third fight with Fury through a rematch clause, although the one-sided nature of Saturday's bout would appear to reduce the chances of the two meeting again.

In a follow-up tweet, Hearn suggested Joshua now represented a much more enticing option for Fury, given the winner would become the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.

"No need for a third let's go straight to it in the Summer! #undisputed," wrote Hearn, while DAZN USA's Twitter account shared a mocked-up image of Fury and Joshua together in the ring.

Reports in recent weeks have suggested Joshua will return to the ring in June against Kubrat Pulev.

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Story first published: Sunday, February 23, 2020, 13:10 [IST]
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