‘Deontay Wilder, Dillian Whyte, then Tyson Fury’ – Anthony Joshua tells talkSPORT his ideal pecking order after Alexander Povetkin win

AJ'S FUTURE PLANS

The 28-year-old stopped Alexander Povetkin on Saturday and will fight again at Wembley Stadium in April 2019

After Anthony Joshua’s sensational knockout victory over Alexander Povetkin, attention quickly turned to who Britain’s boxing superstar will face next.

The WBA, WBO and IBF world heavyweight champion was quizzed in the ring about his future plans by talkSPORT’s Dom McGuinness after he stopped Povetkin in the seventh round and outlined his hopes of a unification showdown with Deontay Wilder, the WBC belt holder.

Anthony Joshua celebrates his win over Alexander Povetkin

Anthony Joshua celebrates his win over Alexander Povetkin

Wilder has agreed a deal to face another Brit, Tyson Fury, in December and Joshua wants the American to be his next opponent in early 2019, with his promoter Eddie Hearn having already booked Wembley Stadium for April 13.

Should a deal with Wilder not materialise, Joshua says he would instead take on Dillian Whyte, with Fury third in his pecking order.

“First and foremost, good luck to Wilder and Fury,” said Joshua, when asked what’s next for him.

“Even though they say a lot of negative things about me, I wish them luck because it is good for the sport of boxing.

“Number two, Dillian Whyte is a very worthy champion in his own right.

“If I had a pecking order, it would be Wilder, Dillian, then Fury. Dillian deserves it more than Fury. He has been more consistent and deserves his shot at these belts.”

Asked if he is confident of facing Wilder in April, he responded: “Yeah. We’ve got the venue booked, we’ve got the date booked. All we need now is a worthy challenger.”

Wilder is all that stands in Joshua’s way of becoming undisputed heavyweight champion of the world

Wilder is all that stands in Joshua’s way of becoming undisputed heavyweight champion of the world

Joshua absorbed early pressure from Povetkin and had to box through a heavily bleeding nose from the first round before recovering to stop the 39-year-old with a ruthless barrage of shots in the seventh.

The 28-year-old revealed to talkSPORT he had been struggling with illness in the build up to the fight, and was delighted to come through against a tough and experienced opponent.

“I suffered with a flu,” he said.

“This camp has been difficult, with 200-plus odd rounds. You can hear it in my nose.

“I have been ill but I knew I had to stay in there. I have been listening to a lot of motivational speeches. Through hard work is the only way you can succeed.

“It was going to get tough in there, but I knew it and because of what I listened to and where my mind was at, my body could follow through today.”

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Boxing – talkSPORT

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