Observer on Saturday - - Sport -

-The WBC heavy­weight cham­pion goaded the WBA, IBF and WBO ti­tle holder as he pre­pares to face Fury at Sta­ples Cen­ter in LA in the early hours of to­mor­row morn­ing.

Wilder, 33, wanted to face Joshua this year but the pair’s teams failed to agree on a deal so he in­stead opted to face Fury. He said: “The AJ fight is up to them, they have to stop be­ing cow­ards, we are mov­ing on from him.” Fury must give the Amer­i­can an­other crack if he up­sets the odds.

But Wilder says he could give Fury a re­match even if he wins this week­end’s clash as he crit­i­cised Joshua for not risk­ing his un­beaten record against him.

He added: “If it’s a great fight and fans want to see the re­match then why not? Why not give a great fighter an­other op­por­tu­nity? “I will prob­a­bly end up giv­ing him a sec­ond op­por­tu­nity be­fore any of these so­called best give him even one op­por­tu­nity,


Lbe­cause they are wor­ried about their clean records. “Hold­ing on to an un­de­feated record is not what makes this sport great.” Fury’s pro­moter Frank War­ren reck­ons the win­ner in LA de­serves to be seen as the best heavy­weight on the planet.

“Who­ever wins be­tween Fury and Wilder, they are the No 1,” said War­ren. “Anthony Joshua is in the slip­stream.” War­ren is con­fi­dent of a Fury win as he has al­ready beaten a bet­ter fighter in Wladimir Kl­itschko. Fury de­throned Kl­itschko as the king of the di­vi­sion three years ago when he claimed the WBO, WBA and IBF ti­tles. War­ren added: “If you look at the fight­ers that Kl­itschko had beaten com­pared to who Wilder has beaten, there is no con­test. “The big ques­tion mark is how has this time out of the ring af­fected him? If he is 80 per cent of what he was, he beats this guy.”

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