By Jake Tiernan: Anthony Joshua says a rematch with Dillian Whyte won’t happen “in the near future,” but he’s not ruling it out from ever happening.
AJ must have a soft spot in his heart towards Whyte for him not to reject a future fight with the 35-year-old, who has had an up-down career despite having loads of talent.
It’s admirable of Joshua not to turn his back on Whyte entirely, as shows that he’s not going to kick a dog while he’s down.
If Whyte can return from this, get a few quick wins under his belt against top-tier opposition, and show that he’s drug-free on tests, he could be an option for Joshua in a year or two.
It’s surprising that Joshua (25-3, 22 KOs) isn’t permanently closing the door on a second fight with Whyte (29-3, 19 KOs) in light of his recent positive VADA drug tests and the subsequent cancellation of their clash for this Saturday.
Joshua will still be fighting this Saturday, August 12th, facing the dangerous knockout artist Robert Helenius at the main event on DAZN at the O2 Arena in London.
“We had two options. We were either going to cancel it or flip a coin and focus on someone else. That’s what we done, and that’s what our team did,” said Anthony Joshua to Fight Hub TV when asked about his reaction to his originally scheduled opponent Dillian Whyte testing positive for a banned substance.
“It’s a shame. I can’t tell honestly tell you what the issue is, but it didn’t affect my card. I’m just happy that I could still go on,” Joshua said when asked about his thoughts on Whyte being popped for drugs in VADA’s tests.
“I was really upset for the undercard fighters that wanted to earn some money, but it’s tough. I don’t know what can be done. I don’t know. I can’t predict the future. I don’t know what will happen,” said Joshua when asked if a rematch with Whyte will ever happen now. “In the near future, I don’t see it happening now.”
It’s unclear if Whyte will be given a lengthy suspension for his positive drug tests. If can train while he’s under suspension and then come back and get quality wins over the likes of Martin Bakole, Frank Sanchez, Filip Hrgovic, Jared Anderson, Andy Ruiz & Arslanbek Makhmudov, a rematch with Joshua would be quite doable.
“Let me focus on Saturday. It’s important,” said Joshua when asked about a fight with Deontay Wilder in January. “With all due respect, I don’t want to look past Helenius.
“He’s a good fighter, and anyone you underestimate has a good chance of winning. I’m putting him in the top tier, and I’ve got to do a job. I need to be victorious on Saturday,” said Joshua.