Deontay Wilder has accepted Anthony Joshua’s challenge and “is ready to sign and come to the UK to fight this summer”.
This will be a unification contest to decide the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.
The US fighter’s team are ready to begin immediate negotiations, Wilder’s co-manager Shelly Finkel confirmed. after promoter Eddie Hearn stressed the need to get the fight signed for this year.
The American fighter is prepared to accept a 60/40 split of the fight purse. The two camps have already broadly discussed a two-fight scenario. Reportedly, the first contest would most likely be at Wembley Stadium and the second in Las Vegas or New York.
“We are really glad that Anthony Joshua said for the first time ‘I will fight Deontay next…’ and we believe he is a man of his word. Deontay accepts the challenge,” Finkel said.
Joshua had been quick to call out Wilder in the ring immediately after defeating Joseph Parker in Cardiff. He had just claimed the unbeaten Samoan’s WBO title to go with his own IBF and WBA belts.
Now only American Wilder, the WBC champion who is undefeated in 40 contests, stands in the way of Joshua unifying all the divisions’ belts for the first time in history.
Finkel said that he will make contact with Eddie Hearn, Barry Hearn and Matchroom Sport. He wants to stress that Wilder, for whom he is co-manager with the influential Al Haymon, is committed to the contest.
“We want to make it public that Deontay wants the fight, and we are prepared to come over, or meet here and get the deal done. Deontay is ready to sign and come to the UK to fight this summer.”