To nobody’s surprise, Anthony Joshua will not be facing IBF mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev on June 20th. Sky Sports reports that the fight “has been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic”; a new date is “still being worked on,” as is the “possibility” of the fight remaining at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
“We’re speaking to Tottenham, we’ve postponed the 20th date,” promoter Eddie Hearn told Sky Sports. “We are working with them for dates in July and early August as well, when we hope we’ll be back.
”Hopefully we see that fight take place at the end of the summer.”
Pulev (28-1, 14 KO) has stated that the fight will take place on July 25th, a date that Hearn has floated before. From where I’m sitting, that might be a tad optimistic.
Pulev has been Joshua’s (23-1, 21 KO) mandatory since beating Hughie Fury in an October 2018 eliminator, since which he’s defeated Bogdan Dinu and Rydell Booker. The two were first slated to duke it out a year prior, only for Pulev to pull out due to injury and leave Joshua to face Carlos Takam.
IBF #2 Charles Martin and #4 Michael Hunter have raised the possibility of squaring off in another eliminator, but between this and all of Joshua’s other obligations (including WBO #1 Oleksandr Usyk), that may take a while to bear fruit.