Heavyweight world champion Anthony Joshua has been given a new mandatory challenger for his WBA (World Boxing Association) belt following his recent win over Joseph Parker.
Joshua recently out pointed Parker to add the WBO belt to his collection that now boasts all the belts bar the final one held by WBC champion Deontay Wilder.
It is thought that a fight between Wilder and Joshua could be set for later this year with both teams now finally engaging in proper communication behind the scenes.
However the WBA have now ordered Russian Alexander Povetkin as Joshua’s next mandatory.
Povetkin’s promoter confirmed the news on social media:
Today Alexandr Povetkin has been confirmed as the WBA mandatory challenger to face Anthony Joshua! The fight is compulsory, the deadline is 150 days to set up the fight, starting today. Joshua has NO right to fight anyone except Sasha! 30 days for negotiations!
— Рябинский Андрей (@Ryabinskiy) April 6, 2018
Povetkin recently defeated David Price on the same bill as Joshua vs Parker in Wales and won the fight via chilling KO.
After the bout he and his team asked Dillian Whyte if they would be prepared to fight them.
Following the news today however, Whyte has not had a positive reaction to Povetkin and his team:
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This is why povetkin don’t wanna fight me now all of a sudden after him and is team and my team agreed they was gonna fight me next live on @skysports now the cowards don’t want that work @eddiehearn I wish there was more people in boxing who’s willing to just fight #COWARDS