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Joshua-Pulev: Manager Says Roman Amphitheatre in Play To Stage

The next defense for WBO, IBO, WBA, IBF heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua could take place in a Roman amphitheatre in Croatia, according to the manager of mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev.

Joshua, 30, was scheduled to defend his titles against Pulev at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London on June 20.

The fight was postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic. A date in late July was kicked around, but it appears to be unlikely.

 "We are discussing Croatia," said Pulev's manager Ivaylo Gotsev to BBC Sport. "There is a unique Roman stadium - Pula Arena - and we are in active talks."

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Joshua has been out of the ring since December, when he reclaimed his titles with a decision win over Andy Ruiz.

The British superstar has not fought in the UK since 2018. Last year he fought in New York City and Saudi Arabia.

According to Gotsev, both sides have set aside four weeks to find a new venue if coronavirus measures in place in the UK do not change, with targets set to deliver the bout in August or September.

The British Boxing Board of Control is preparing for bouts to return behind closed doors in July with strict measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

Joshua's promoter Eddie Hearn has said staging the world title bout behind closed doors was only going to be considered a "last resort".

Gotsev believes the Croatia venue would allow fans to attend if the necessary safety measures were in place.

"We like this option because it is in Europe, in the middle of the continent," Gotsev added. "There will also be an opportunity for spectators with the right measures taken.

"There needs to be a mutual agreement. We want the terms and conditions to be beneficial for both parties. They can't meet in Bulgaria because Joshua will not agree."

Joshua was initially scheduled to fight Pulev, 34-year-old, at Cardiff's Principality Stadium in October 2017. He withdrew with a should injury and was later replaced by Carlos Takam.

User Comments and Feedback
Comment by Jack Rivers on 05-09-2020

HA! Yeah right. All talk. AJ ain't fighting anywhere except his safe space....unless Pulev is paid to take a dive. He got lucky with Ruiz 2 because Andy is an undisciplined lard @$$ who couldn't show up to the biggest…

Comment by Oshio on 05-08-2020

Croatia of all places... Arum must be interested in the kiss of the country's president. I hear she's a beautiful lady and that kissing is a form of salutation there. Oh ma gawd, Pulev! Female journalists there are in trouble

Comment by HaZely on 05-08-2020

Joshua, he lost again

Comment by Corelone on 05-07-2020

When they talk about AJ it's a Roman amphitheater vs a built up opponent. Talk Whyte, and its a car park vs a rehabilitated drug addict. I'm still trying to figure that out.

Comment by MulaKO on 05-07-2020

AJ won’t agree and we all know why Same reason Canelo don’t wanna fight anywhere else but Vegas

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