Joshua has no respect for Fury

Anthony Joshua says he has no respect for Tyson Fury and is lacking in sentiment towards likely 2018 opponents Joseph Parker and Deontay Wilder.

WBA and IBO champion Joshua (20-0-0) is "95 per cent" towards finalising a fight with WBO strap-holder Parker in March next year, with WBC champ Wilder then likely to loom into view.

If Joshua can unify the division, clamour will rise further for an all-British bout between him and Fury, who has not fought since beating Wladimir Klitschko for three of those four belts in November 2015.

Fury relinquished his titles amid personal problems, but the Manchester-born fighter is plotting a comeback in 2018 and has maintained a vocal pursuit of Joshua since the latter's rise to rule over the division.

Joshua says the verbal barbs that Fury has used to keep his name in headlines has left him with a cold opinion of his countryman.

"I don't respect him," Joshua told BBC Radio 5 Live.


A real humble brother, all the best next year

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"I don't have much respect for many boxers in the heavyweight division. It's not an act with me. I'm being honest. I used to. I used to say very nice things. 

"In tennis, in Formula One, in basketball, in football they all hold each other in high regard.

"If I speak well of Tyson Fury and say 'what he's achieved is so hard and I respect him' it builds the credibility of the heavyweight championship belt up.

"But when Tyson Fury says 'Anthony Joshua is a bum' and 'look at him, he's struggling against this opponent' it discredits everything I've achieved. 

"What we are achieving as heavyweight champions of the world is phenomenal. 

"But for someone in my own industry to discredit it, I can't respect that person. And I used to have a lot of respect for him."

Fury has routinely criticised Joshua's performances, including his own 11-round epic against Klitschko at Wembley this year, and the current champion will be happy to settle scores between the ropes.

Joshua added: "He is a lively opponent when he is fit.

"He has his own battles and demons to face and once he has got over them he's more than welcome to enter a ring with me. It's something we should be focusing on in 2018.

"With all due respect to Tyson Fury, it would be wise if his handlers got him a few fights. Get the body ticking over again and get that love for the sport back. Get a few wins under the belt and then we can get it cracking."

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