Joshua admits he wanted Wembley clash with Fury or Wilder but was forced to settle for Miller battle in New York


ANTHONY JOSHUA is off to crack America but his Big Baby opponent might leave him looking like a dummy.

The glorious 2017 Wembley win over Wladimir Klitschko sparked the AJ-era, during which he carried the heavyweight division single handedly.

Anthony Joshua will make his American debut against Jarrell Miller on June 1 in New York

But Tyson Fury, Deontay Wilder and Dillian Whyte have raced up on the inside track in recent months and snatched the best headlines and opponents away from the Olympic golden boy.

When the WBO, WBA and IBF boss booked Wembley again for April 13, fans assumed high-profile dance partners would form an orderly queue.

But that booking has been ripped up and 22st unknown Jarrell Miller has got the shot.

American WBC champ Deontay Wilder refused to return calls from Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn, after his incredible draw with Tyson Fury on December 1.

Joshua will defend his WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight titles against unbeaten Miller
The fight will act as the first time Joshua has fought in the US as he meets Miller at Madison Square Garden
AP:Associated Press

The Gypsy King, whose stock has rocketed since he went to Los Angeles and was robbed of the title by the hapless judges, knocked back a couple of offers.

And new fans’ favourite Dillian Whyte, who was booed into his 2015 defeat to AJ, has gone on a nine-fight win streak and rejected a third and final offer of £6million for part II.

Instead the Watford star will fight in the early hours of Sunday June 2 at Madison Square Garden for his US debut and a career high pay of £25million.

But he could not hide his regret that fight 23 is up against his fourth choice and not his dream bout.

Eddie Hearn insists his offers to Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder were rebuffed for an April 13 Wembley fight
PA:Press Association
Whyte had declined an offer to fight Anthony Joshua as he believed he was not offered enough money
Getty Images – Getty

AJ said: “Wembley is so close to my heart, it is a great spot, I have fought in small halls and arenas and it has been humbling and a blessing to fight in stadiums.

“Myself and Deontay Wilder are the current active heavyweight champions and we were looking to get that fight on April 13 but things happen with boxing politics.

“We had to branch out and look for other options and Jarrell Miller came along.”

The Big Apple battle will come almost nine months after Joshua’s last fight, a clubbing win over Alexander Povetkin on September 22, and only after his three main rivals rejected the London show.

Joshua admitted he favoured an undisputed heavyweight world title showdown with Wilder
Dave Pinegar – The Sun
Wilder refused to return calls from Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn, after his incredible draw with Tyson Fury on December 1

And Hearn has admitted, as excited as he is about hosting a show at the iconic venue, AJ would prefer to be fulfilling his UK date with destiny.

But the money on the table from streaming platform DAZN, as well as the chance to build Joshua’s Stateside profile for future fights, was too good to turn down.

He said: “It’s not just DAZN, it’s Sky Sports Box Office, it’s MSG, it’s international TV. But he would rather box at Wembley in April than New York.

Hearn admitted the chance for Joshua to enhance his profile in the US was too god to turn down

“AJ against Wilder last September might have done 300-400,000 buys in the States. Now it does over a million.

“Part of that is down to Wilder and we give him that respect, now it’s down to what we do over there to amplify that.”



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