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Anthony Joshua to defend belts against mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev

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The heavyweight division has returned to the top of the sport, with much interest now on the division. Tyson Fury recently ended the lengthy unbeaten run of Deontay Wilder to claim the WBC belt but will now have to face him in their trilogy fight.

Fury will be expected to home through the fight and could we then see an all British heavyweight contest to become the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world?

Anthony Joshua will also now need to come through this next test against mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev, but is going to start as the overwhelming favourite and it would be a major shock were he to be beaten for just the second time in his career.

READ ALSO: Boxing: Wilder calls out Joshua or Ruiz Jr for undisputed heavyweight title fight

Having said that, he lost at a price of 1/33 when fighting Ruiz the first time round, with some of the best online bookmakers reporting exceptional profits on the fight outright, and method of victory markets – especially given the opening price of 1/5 for him to stop the Mexican by either KO, TKO or disqualification.

He claims it remains a long term ambition to fight in Nigeria, with fans there always continuing to support him. Furthermore, he recently travelled over before his rematch win over Andy Ruiz Jr, to get his drive back to retain his titles.

Joshua will now face off against Kubrat Pulev looking to extend on his record that currently stands at 23 wins and one loss. This includes victories over the likes of Wladimir Klitschko, Joseph Parker, Alexander Povetkin and Andy Ruiz Jr.

The victory over Klitschko was the performance that really pushed Joshua to the top of the division, where he had to dig deep following being put onto the canvas. This was the first time that Joshua had to battle for a victory but proved he has the heart on top of the ability.

Source: https://www.worldboxingnews.net/2020/02/15/anthony-joshua-kubrat-pulev-2020/

Joshua was surprisingly beaten by Andy Ruiz Jr but returned to completely outbox him in the rematch. This was an impressive performance and a victory over Pulev would now set him up for a chance to become the undisputed heavyweight champion.

The bout would likely see him face off against Fury, which is now one of the most anticipated fights in recent times. Both will be looking to become the first undisputed champion since Lennox Lewis, also following on from the likes of Mike Tyson.

However, Joshua must first get past his challenger, with the fight set to take place on Saturday 20th June in London. Joshua will be defending his WBA, WBO and IBF titles against the mandatory IBF challenger. At 38 years of age, Pulev is coming to the latter stages of his career, so this is likely to be his last shot at the title.

READ ALSO: Anthony Joshua thanks Nigerian envoy for inspiring him

The Bulgarian has a professional record of 28 wins and just one loss, with his only defeat coming via a ko loss to previous champion Wladimir Klitschko back in 2015. Since then he has won eight fights in succession and now deserves his shot at the title. This run includes victories over the likes of Dereck Chisora, Kevin Johnson and Hughie Fury. The latter of course the cousin of WBC champion Tyson Fury.

It will be a major shock were he to defeat Joshua, but is likely to pose a threat as he remains one of the leading fighters in the heavyweight division.

Vanguard

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