Anthony Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn has confirmed that the former two-time unified heavyweight champ is expected to return to the ring early April. The bout will launch an active year that is expected to end with a long in-demand super-fight with a fellow former titleholder.
“He wants to return to the ring with a Top 15 guy,” Hearn revealed during his weekly appearance on The DAZN Boxing Show podcast. “Then in the summer probably versus Dillian Whyte and then a mega-fight with Deontay Wilder.
“The plan now is to rebuild him to become a three-time heavyweight world champion. It’s all very well being brave, listening to Twitter, going out and fighting Deontay Wilder. But there has to be a plan, a smart plan.”
British-Nigerian Joshua (24-3, 22KOs) fought just once in each of the past three years. His lone appearance in 2022 was a repeat defeat to Ukraine’s Oleksandr Usyk (20-0, 13KOs), who outpointed Joshua over 12 rounds to successfully defend his WBA,IBF and WBO heavyweight titles in their August 20, 2022 rematch in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Usyk claimed the belts in a 12-round unanimous decision victory over the 2012 Olympic gold medalist and two-time champ in their first meeting on September 24, 2021 at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in North London.