Tyson Fury fight with Anthony Joshua set for July 24 in Saudi Arabia with £500m rematch in UK later this year

ANTHONY JOSHUA's heavyweight unification bout with Tyson Fury will take place in Saudi Arabia during the Olympics this summer, according to his promoter Eddie Hearn.

And UK fight fans can then look forward to a Wembley rematch.

Negotiations between the two camps have been ongoing for weeks now, with Hearn freely admitting that they have already missed self-imposed deadlines.

But a finalisation is edging closer, with the first bout initially set for around July 24, and no later than early-August.

According to The Telegraph, Hearn said: "We all know now that both sides have signed the contract, they have both accepted one specific proposal and we are finalising that with contracts going backwards and forwards and tiny, tiny points getting ironed out.

"We haven’t finalised an exact date, July 24 is the rough date but it may leak into early August but no later than that. The Olympics will be a different timezone so it’s not really in the mindset."

The timing of the bout is a curious one, with big fights very rarely taking place during the summer Olympic Games.

And while Hearn isn't concerned about the clash, he admits that Joshua may be without his trainer Rob McCracken, who also works as coach of the GB Olympic boxing team.

He added: "We don’t have a choice.

"There are too many people and things to fit around already with the fighters, trainers, countries, time zones, the Olympics. There is all this stuff around it, so whatever date we are given by the site is the date that we will go with. The plan is to go ahead accordingly.


"I know AJ and Rob have been talking around this, so I am sure they will work it out. So it will depend on timings, the date we get given is when the fight takes place and the guys know it will be around the Olympics.

"It could be inappropriate but it is the biggest fight in boxing and the biggest moment in AJ’s career so we have to work it out."

As for what McCracken will do, Hearn said: "I know Rob takes his position very seriously, he loves the job and the kids so it’s not ideal but we can’t move it a couple of weeks either side.

"Someone is spending a lot of money so we have to go whenever they say."

Hearn, 41, is in no doubt as to which event should take priority.

He continued: "I know the Olympics is a huge event but I see them very differently. I know a lot of people won’t agree with me but I personally see this bigger than the Olympics.

"I just feel it is bigger than the Olympics, for Britain, because the world will stop to watch and it’s between two Brits. It’s impossible to schedule anything without clashing with something, it’s impossible so we will go on the date we are told to go on."

In good news for British fight fans, the huge clash WILL take place at UK prime time, with Hearn confirming: "It will be peak time UK, middle of the night in Tokyo, there will not be a TV clash.

"There is going to be a crowd, indoors obviously, so up to 20,000."

Fans have been waiting for confirmation for months on end.

I have missed a couple of deadlines so I don’t want to keep coming up with new ones. It’s close

But Hearn believes an announcement is close.

He finished: "There is no hold-up. You get a written offer come in, from there you accept the offer, which we have done, and then it is on to long form contracts for the site agreement.

"That's where we are now. It’s a huge deal, so it is not something that requires just one draft. There have been drafts going backwards and forwards between our lawyers and Top Rank’s lawyers.

"I have missed a couple of deadlines so I don’t want to keep coming up with new ones. It’s close. There is zero hold-up."

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