Dillian Whyte doesn’t believe Anthony Joshua had any intention of fighting him again last April.
As much as Joshua and their promoter, Eddie Hearn, discussed the possibility of a rematch with Whyte, the brash British contender dismissed it as a publicity ploy. Whyte feels Joshua intended to make his U.S. debut against Jarrell Miller all along.
Otherwise, Whyte thinks Joshua would’ve agreed to fight Miller at Wembley Stadium in London on April 13, 2019, not at Madison Square Garden in New York. The way that situation was handled makes Whyte doubt whether Joshua will ever grant him a rematch Whyte wants badly.
“All I can do is stay ready and stay focused on what I’m doing,” Whyte told Sky Sports. “My only requirement is give me enough time to prepare properly. Don’t do what Joshua did, saying I refused to fight when he already knew and had told everyone in December 2018 that he had arranged to fight Jarrell Miller [last] June 1 at MSG in New York, before his fake negotiations with me.
“I’ve spent more time haggling over the price of tires for one of my cars than they spent negotiating with me on the Wembley fight. A couple of texts and a five-minute meeting. AJ was trying to use me, to make it look like he wanted the fight and that he wanted to fight in the UK. If he wanted to fight in Wembley, why didn’t he fight Miller there or Ruiz?”
Brooklyn’s Miller (23-0-1, 21 KOs) tested positive for three banned substances last year and was replaced by Andy Ruiz Jr. less than six weeks before Joshua and Miller were supposed to fight. Ruiz ruined Joshua’s debut in the United States by dropping him four times and stopping him in the seventh round June 1 at Madison Square Garden.
England’s Joshua (23-1, 21 KOs) out-boxed Ruiz (33-2, 22 KOs) in their immediate rematch, won a unanimous decision and regained his IBF, IBO, WBA and WBO titles December 7 in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia. Whyte wants a chance to avenge his seventh-round TKO loss to Joshua in December 2015 at O2 Arena in London, yet he questions Joshua’s willingness to fight him again.
“It’s just bullsh-t!,” Whyte said. “I’ve wanted to fight AJ again for years and they know that. He had an immediate rematch with Ruiz, but won’t give me a rematch. That’s why I want the WBC belt, so he can’t continue to avoid me and fool the public with fake excuses.”
London’s Whyte (27-1, 18 KOs) is tentatively scheduled to face former WBA champ Alexander Povetkin (35-2-1, 24 KOs) for the WBC interim championship July 4 at Manchester Arena in Manchester, England. If Whyte wins that fight, he’ll remain the WBC’s mandatory challenger for the winner of the third bout between WBC champ Tyson Fury (30-0-1, 21 KOs) and former champ Deontay Wilder (42-1-1, 41 KOs).
If Whyte wins the WBC belt and Joshua holds on to his four titles, the winner of their rematch would be crowned undisputed heavyweight champion.
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