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Hearn begins negotiations for Joshua-Pulev

With the news that Wladimir Klitschko will be retiring from boxing, Anthony Joshua must look towards Kubrat Pulev.

Boxing at Wembley Stadium Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn has his attention squarely on putting together a mandatory title defense between Anthony Joshua and Kubrat Pulev in light of Wladimir Klitschko’s accnounced retirement.

The 36-year-old Pulev (25-1, 13 KOs) is the highest ranking contender by the IBF, making him next in line for a shot at Joshua’s red belt.

"When the IBF cleared the Klitschko rematch it was under the proviso that if it's not Klitschko it must be Pulev, so we've already got talks in place with Kalle Sauerland.

"Part of me is quite pleased we can move forward and draw a line under this. There was always the worry with Klitschko's age that we could announce the fight and he could get injured in camp, various bits and pieces like that.”

Hearn expects a formal announcement of Joshua’s next fight to come quickly, quicker than a Klitschko fight would’ve been made, adding that Joshua has been itching to get back into action.

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