Joshua vs Usyk close to being finalised

Anthony Joshua’s September showdown with Oleksandr Usyk close to being finalised as promoters meet to iron out ‘small issues’… and heavyweight title fight at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium can take place in front of capacity crowd

  • World heavyweight title fight between Anthony Joshua and Oleksandr Usyk slated for September 25 at the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
  • Promoters are set to meet by conference call on Wednesday night to smooth out the remaining ‘small issues’ in arrangements
  • Skeleton details of the plans have been in place since Joshua’s proposed fight with Tyson Fury fell through in May
  • Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s announcement about Covid restrictions easing means fight can take place in front of a capacity crowd 

The final hurdles standing between Anthony Joshua and a world heavyweight title clash with Oleksandr Usyk could be ironed out on Wednesday night, the Ukrainian’s promoter has told Sportsmail.

Joshua is slated to defend his WBO, WBA and IBF belts against the former cruiserweight king on September 25 at the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

The skeleton details of the deal were struck not long after Joshua’s proposed fight with Tyson Fury fell through back in May but fans are still awaiting official confirmation.

Anthony Joshua’s fight with Oleksandr Usyk on September 25 to defend his WBA, IBF and WBO straps is set to take a significant step forward 

Usyk (left) will fight Joshua at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium at the end of September

‘According to my experience in boxing, the fight is done when both fighters enter the ring and the bell sounds,’ Alex Krassyuk of K2 Promotions told Sportsmail from Kiev.

‘We just have three small issues to co-ordinate, which we’re going to do tonight. We have a conference call to fix everything and to proceed with signing (contracts).’

Usyk’s position as mandatory challenger to AJ’s WBO crown put him next in line once Joshua-Fury was derailed, when a US judge ruled Fury must instead face a third fight with Deontay Wilder.

Krassyuk has worked alongside Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn before and on Wednesday he shed some light on the delays, adding: ‘(It’s) some small risky things, which are not likely to happen. But we are professionals and we need to secure even the lowest possibility issues.

The Ukrainian is AJ’s WBO mandatory challenger and will get his shot this autumn

Joshua defeated Kubrat Pulev in his last fight at Wembley Arena in December last year

The fight will take place at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium with a full capacity crowd allowed

‘That’s why we keep saying: the principal things have been coordinated a long time ago. But all those small issues are in progress. Nothing major. 

‘We keep saying we’re going to make it within a couple of days. But the issue is our lawyers are in the United States, we’re in Ukraine, (AJ’s) guys are in the UK…’

Boris Johnson’s recent announcement paves the way for full capacity in London, while the decision to move Spurs’ north London derby at Arsenal to Sunday September 26 will ensure there is no clash with a Saturday fight night.

‘We don’t need to talk much,’ Krassyuk added. ‘We just need to agree on small issues and to proceed further.’

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