Eddie Hearn has given Tyson Fury’s team a deadline of the end of this week to salvage his prospective summer showdown against Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia.
The contest has been thrown into doubt by a legal ruling in the US that states Fury is contractually bound to fulfil a third meeting with Deontay Wilder.
The decision by an arbitrator, which can be legally binding, came just hours after Fury appeared to confirm his clash with Joshua would take place on August 14.
Speaking on Matchroom’s social media channels, Hearn said: “We can’t wait around. We had a deal in place with Tyson Fury and we were told the arbitration wouldn’t be an issue, that we could move on with this fight.
“They were wrong and that’s on them, that’s their responsibility and their problem. We hope they can solve that problem, but we have to look after ourselves and Anthony Joshua.
“We have to maintain the position of unified world champion, and those talks will continue and we want to be in a position by the end of this week to know, are we fighting Tyson Fury or are we moving forward with another option.”
While the decision would not necessarily scupper a Fury-Joshua deal, it would require Fury’s team to summon a substantial pay-off in order to convince Wilder to temporarily step aside.
And it would also seemingly scupper hopes that the deal struck by Fury and Joshua could include a clause for an immediate rematch between the pair.
Fury and Wilder fought a split decision draw in December 2018 in Los Angeles, before Fury won their second meeting by seventh-round stoppage in February last year.
Attempts to secure a third fight were complicated by an injury to Wilder and an absence of available television dates, prompting Fury to move on based on the assumption that any agreement had expired.
Fury announced earlier this week that the unification clash was “100% on” for August 14, adding: “I cannot wait to smash Anthony Joshua on the biggest stage of all time.”