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Dillian Whyte: If Anthony Joshua really wants the rematch, it can happen

Whyte is still open to facing is old rival in a rematch, but only for a serious offer.

BOX-GBR-HEAVY-JOSHUA-WHYTE LEON NEAL/AFP via Getty Images
Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

Dillian Whyte suffered his only professional loss back in 2015 against Anthony Joshua, and approaching five years later, he says he’s still completely open to a rematch, despite any reports otherwise.

Whyte (27-1, 18 KO) has more aggressively tried to get a shot at the WBC title, formerly held by Deontay Wilder and now by Tyson Fury, in recent years. He was considered a possible Wembley Stadium foe for Joshua (23-1, 21 KO) in April of 2019, but he’s always said he felt the offer was a lowball and not serious, and continues to believe that the Joshua side just used his name at the time, with no real intention of going ahead with a promised April date at Wembley, which ultimately wound up not happening, to be fair:

“Just using me as a scapegoat, pretending they wanted to make the fight. If he wants to fight, I’m here, he knows where I’m at. They know where my value is, I know the game inside out. If they want the fight, we can make the fight happen. No point pretending you want the fight, pretending you’re trying to make it. No. If you want the fight, the fight is there. I’ll fight anyone, any time, anywhere. If he wants it, he can get it.”

Joshua had been slated to have that Wembley fight well ahead of time, but when a suitable opponent for a stadium bout in the UK couldn’t be found (or “couldn’t be found,” if you ask Whyte), they instead decided to take Joshua to New York for his U.S. debut against Jarrell Miller. Miller failed a battery of drug tests for various substances, Andy Ruiz Jr stepped in on short notice, and the rest is history.

But Joshua got revenge against Ruiz in December, and is now set to face IBF mandatory Kubrat Pulev on June 20 at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, or at least that’s still the idea. Whyte, too, has a fight set, May 2 in Manchester against veteran contender Alexander Povetkin, which is far from a gimme. And Whyte has the WBC’s word, for whatever it’s worth, that he’ll finally get the title shot he’s felt he was owed for a long time now in early 2021.

So will Joshua-Whyte 2 happen? Not any time particularly soon, it seems, but if the two keep winning, there will be big interest in the United Kingdom. And even if they didn’t, there would still be arena-level interest.

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