Tyson Fury vs Anthony Joshua fight location will ‘depend on COVID-19’ as Frank Warren casts doubt over possibility of staging it in UK

Frank Warren admitted coronavirus will dictate where a fight between Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua will take place and put doubt whether that will be in the UK.

Everyone had hoped we would finally get to see the British heavyweight battle between AJ and Fury this summer, but plans were scuppered when the ‘Gypsy Kings’ was forced to face Deontay Wilder.

Between them, AJ and Fury hold all four major heavyweight world titles at present

That was due to happen this month, until Fury tested positive for coronavirus and it was put back to October.

Joshua is due to face Oleksandr Usyk at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in September.

Any hopes it will take place in 2021 have disappeared, and the soonest we can realistically hope for is early 2022.

It had looked likely that Saudi Arabia would host the bout, but Warren, who co-promotes Fury, said a lot of factors will dictate where it will take place – if both fighters get through their upcoming fights.

Fury’s fight with Wilder was due to be this month, but pushed back to October
Ryan Hafey/PBC

He told talkSPORT: “No one can predict what will happen with COVID. You think about what has happened in the last few days, we’ve had a situation where the numbers are rising.

“We are moving to winter, unless we go to Cardiff and put the roof on, there is no other stadium you can put a fight on in winter.

“They are anticipating COVID is going to be strong this winter, they are saying.

“It keeps changing and evolving, half of Australia has just shut down. Israel, who everyone was looking at and saying ‘look how well they are doing’, they’ve had massive cases there again.

Frank Warren says there are plenty of unknowns when it comes to the fight between AJ and Fury

“It’s happening everywhere. At the end of the day, what has to happen is we’ve got to go with the flow and take advantage of what is around when the two guys fight.

“I hope by the time the guys fight the COVID thing has been beaten and we are in a much safer place and we can look at what our options are.

“First of all, the guys have got to win their fights, Joe (Joyce) has to win his fight. Everyone has got to win their fight.

“Anything can happen with these big guys. One punch, bang, and it’s all over. I’ve seen that happen.”

Joyce is fighting Carlos Takam this weekend and is the mandatory WBO challenger, meaning he will be in line to fight the winner of AJ vs Usyk.

Warren said we will see AJ vs Fury first, but said the 35-year-old was in a good place for a title fight.

Arsenal fan Joyce is ready to become a world champion
Twitter: @frankwarren_tv

He added: “It means immediately after that fight Joe will be the mandatory. When that mandatory is due, the winner will have to fight him.

“If AJ gets through, we want to see AJ vs Tyson fight, providing Tyson gets through, which I hope and believe he will. 

“There needs to be a bit of patience, but he’s in a real good position. We’ve worked very hard to get him there.

“He can’t slip up on Saturday, he can’t afford to.”