WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder labelled Britain’s Anthony Joshua a “coward” for failing to secure a bout between the two, hours before the American then clashed with upcoming opponent Tyson Fury at a news conference on Monday.
Joshua’s promotion team Matchroom Boxing did not immediately respond for comment by email or phone. Wilder and Fury began their promotional tour in London for their December 1 fight in Los Angeles with a possible bout against IBF, WBA, IBO and WBO holder Joshua in 2019 up for grabs.
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Joshua was in negotiations with Wilder’s team earlier this year to organise a fight which would have presented the opportunity for either man to become undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.
However, talks fell through with both sides blaming the other for the breakdown. Joshua instead fought and knocked out Russian Alexander Povetkin at Wembley Stadium last month which took him to 22 fights unbeaten. Hours earlier, however, Wilder and Fury had somewhat stolen the limelight by announcing their match.
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“Hey Joshua, me and Fury have got this thing going on to see who is the biggest and baddest in the world, to see who is champion, one face, one name, something you was too coward to do,” Wilder said on ITV’s Good Morning Britain on Monday.