Eddie Hearn says Anthony Joshua will fight in any location, even if it is behind closed doors or at the promoter's home.

Joshua, who was set to face Kubrat Pulev in June and has also agreed to a two-fight deal with Tyson Fury, has not fought since regaining his WBA, IFB and WBO heavyweight belts from Andy Ruiz Jr in Saudi Arabia in December.

Hearn, meanwhile, has constructed a ring in the grounds of his estate in Essex, with the aim for boxing to return from the coronavirus-enforced break with an event called 'Fight Camp'.

The event is set to start next month, and though Joshua is not currently slated to be involved, Hearn is adamant the 30-year-old is willing to fight anywhere.

"Joshua would fight here [at Hearn's home], no problem," Hearn told BBC Sport.

"If we were faced with the option of having no fans for an Anthony Joshua fight, we would still look to go ahead. He's spent a lot of time training out here in this garden so he would have no problem fighting here himself.

"He was here a couple of weeks ago. He loves to fight, to box and it's not just about fighting in a huge arena – Wembley Stadium, Madison Square Garden – it's about boxing.

"We want him to be in front of crowds. But for his career, for his development, he needs to fight this year."

Hearn is also confident Joshua's planned fight with Pulev will go ahead in 2020.

"Of course fighters want to earn as much money as possible but they also need to develop as fighters and I think the Kubrat Pulev fight is a good, solid, tough fight for him and I am almost certain you will see that fight this year," Hearn added.

"He wants to improve as a fighter and he will do it anywhere, anytime."

Heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua hopes Mike Tyson's return to boxing "adds value" to the sport.

Tyson, 54, will return to the ring for the first time in 15 years to take on 51-year-old Roy Jones Jr in an eight-round exhibition fight on September 12.

Jones was a four-weight champion – becoming the first former world middleweight ruler to win a heavyweight title since Bob Fitzsimmons 106 years earlier when he beat John Ruiz in 2003.

The all-time great has a professional record of 66-9 and has not fought since February 2018.

Former undisputed heavyweight champion Tyson retired with a 50-6 record following a defeat to Kevin McBride in 2005.

Reigning WBA, WBO and IBF king Joshua supports Tyson's return to the sport and hopes it can have a positive effect on boxing.

"Mike Tyson hitting the pads with that ferocious behaviour is just second nature to him, but to someone watching from home it looks like this guy's going to come and rule the heavyweight division," Joshua told Sky Sports.

"But I think that it's a passion they both love, it's what they know. Mike Tyson has been fighting since he was 13 years old. Roy Jones' dad pushed him and forced him to be a great.

"Good luck to them both, it's all they know. They haven't got to do it to compete with the young lions in the division now because we're bigger, we're stronger.

"Science has improved, there's more technology. The sporting world has developed as a whole.

"But if Mike Tyson wants to come back and fight someone from his era, for the love of the sport, crack on.

"I wish them both well, I hope they come out healthy and I hope it adds value to the sport of boxing – the sport we love."

Anthony Joshua joked heavyweight rival Tyson Fury "blew his cover" through the pair's chance meeting in Marbella last week.

Photographs of unified IBF, WBA and WBO champion Joshua talking to WBC king Fury as the latter passed him in a car at the Spanish resort again set tongues wagging over a long-mooted meeting in the ring.

Fury must first come through a third encounter with American knockout artist Deontay Wilder, who he dethroned spectacularly in February, while Joshua has an obligation to IBF mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev, who he was slated to meet in June at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium before the coronavirus pandemic struck.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Joshua acknowledged a fight with Fury has to happen in the near future and poked some gentle fun at his fellow Briton.

"It's only right that me and him will bump heads soon. We're going to put on a great show for the British public, the world public," Joshua said.

"It's going to be a massive fight. I'm looking forward to it.

"What was cheeky about the situation [in Marbella] was he couldn't even get out of the car and offer me a drink.

"I don't know how he saw me because I had my mask on, my hat on and everything.

"He's obviously got his eye on me. He's probably following me around, he blew his cover!

"All respect to him. He was with his wife as well, all respect to her. They're a humble family."

Joshua attended a Black Lives Matter rally in his hometown of Watford on crutches last month, although he reported encouraging progress from a knee complaint.

"I think you saw I bumped into Tyson Fury last week. I'm on my feet, I'm going for my 10,000 steps," he added.

"I'm in the gym, I'm standing up, I'm smashing the heavy bag, smashing the bag. The knee's good."

Anthony Joshua's world titles could "slip from him again" if he does not take the fight to Kubrat Pulev, says trainer Peter Fury.

The Briton shockingly lost his IBF, WBA and WBO belts to Andy Ruiz Jr in July 2019 before regaining them with a convincing performance in a December rematch.

Joshua's next defence is against Pulev, though a venue and a date have yet to be confirmed due to continued uncertainty over the coronavirus pandemic.

Should Joshua come through unscathed, a lucrative unification bout with countryman Tyson Fury is on the cards, providing the WBC title holder defends his own strap against Deontay Wilder.

But Peter Fury, Tyson's uncle and former trainer, thinks Joshua can ill afford to look too far ahead.

"Pulev is very cagey and he'll come in top condition as well, and he's really up for this fight," he told Sky Sports.

"He's got a very good jab. He's a very underestimated boxer is Pulev. He's very awkward.

"You've got to break him down and AJ will have to take chances in this fight, because he's not going to just simply be able to land that double jab and right hand on Pulev, no matter how sharp he is.

"AJ has got to take it to him and be explosive, but be clever with it. You have to fancy the younger man, but like I said, you can't put anything past Pulev, because he's a very cute, professional fighter.

"It's not a pushover fight this, it's a serious fight. When people are famous in boxing everyone expects them to win, but it's not the case in this fight.

"This fight is a dangerous fight for him. If he doesn't keep 100 per cent focused, this fight can slip from him again."

Tyson Fury admitted he is unsure if he will ever meet Anthony Joshua in the ring, even though the two heavyweight world champions have agreed a two-fight deal.

Last month Fury confirmed the two Britons - who own all of the four major heavyweight belts between them - had reached an agreement over a pair of bouts to take place in 2021. 

However, Fury has more pressing business to take care of first as Deontay Wilder has invoked a rematch clause for a third bout against the man who took his WBC belt in Las Vegas in February.

Joshua, the IBF, WBA and WBO champion, is due to fight Kubrat Pulev later in the year while he will have another hurdle to clear should Oleksandr Usyk enforce his mandatory shot at the WBO title, which his camp has suggested they intend to do.

All of that has led to Fury doubting whether the proposed all-British showdown between him and Joshua will ever come to fruition.

"If it's supposed to happen... I'm not convinced it is," Fury told iFL TV.

"I never have been convinced. Never, never, never have I ever been convinced that I will fight Anthony Joshua.

"How can I be convinced? If he's got to fight Pulev and if he's got to fight Usyk, how can I be convinced he's going to get through those fights without losing?

"How can I even be confident I'm going to smash Wilder? Wilder can absolutely blitz me in round one with one big right hand, good night Vienna.

"That would put a hell of a wedge in the door. This is why I hate talking about fights that don't really exist yet.

"I have to tell the truth because that's what I'm known to do. Can I honestly say this fight is going to happen, a million per cent, me and Joshua? I can't.

"But providing we both get through our upcoming fights, then I know it's going to happen."

Anthony Joshua's injury will not impact upon his planned fights with Kubrat Pulev or Tyson Fury, according to promoter Eddie Hearn.

Joshua was pictured on crutches, with his left knee in a brace, while attending a Black Lives Matter protest in Watford.

The IBF, WBA and WBO world heavyweight champion is expected to be out of action for four weeks.

Charles Martin's camp said the American was "ready and waiting" to fight Pulev later this year if Joshua was unable to compete.

Hearn, however, has no concerns about Joshua's injury making him a doubt to face Pulev or Fury, who has an agreement in principle over a double-header in 2021.

"When you're on crutches with your leg in a brace it is never great, but it's not something that will affect his 2020 career or his career at all," Hearn told Sky Sports.

"He will have [the brace] on for three or four weeks just to make sure he is good to go to resume training.

"He tweaked the inside of his knee. He's had scans. No surgery, so that's good news.

"He's got to make sure he doesn't do any running or heavy work over the next few weeks."

Hearn says the IBF mandatory bout with Pulev is likely to take place in November, allowing the prospect of a unification clash with Fury after he fights Deontay Wilder for a third time and Dillian Whyte before February next year.

"In our minds, [Joshua versus Pulev] happens in November," said Hearn.

"We know that Deontay Wilder's side are working on the Fury fight. We have Dillian Whyte hopefully fighting at our headquarters in August against Alexander Povetkin.

"There are talks to stage the Pulev fight around November. That's the fight that is next. It's the IBF mandatory.

"We want to make sure that, when a Joshua-Fury fight does happen, it is for all the belts. The undisputed heavyweight championship of the world."

Tyson Fury says a two-fight deal with Anthony Joshua is in place, with the two heavyweight champions set to meet in 2021.

Joshua regained the IBF, WBA and WBO titles from Andy Ruiz Jr in December 2019, while Fury defeated Deontay Wilder in February to gain the WBC strap.

Fury posted on Instagram to say an agreement had been reached, though he must first win a trilogy fight against Wilder.

"I'm just after getting off the phone with [broker] Daniel Kinahan. He's just informed me that the biggest fight in British boxing history has just been agreed," said Fury.

"Big shout out Dan, he got this done, literally over the line, a two-fight deal, Tyson Fury versus Anthony Joshua next year.

"One problem, I've just got to smash Deontay Wilder's face right in in the next fight, and then we go into the Joshua fight next year.

"So there we are, the Gypsy King versus AJ is on for next year but there's a hurdle in the road called the Bronze Bomber, AKA the Knockout King, and I will get right onto him and knock him spark out and then get onto the next fight."

Prior to Fury's comments, Joshua's promoter Eddie Hearn said the two fighters had agreed on the financial aspects of the deal.

"We're making great progress," Hearn told Sky Sports. "There is still a lot to overcome. We are looking at venues and dates.

"We have the Dillian Whyte mandatory which is due before this fight. It's fair to say [Joshua and Fury] are in agreement regarding the financial terms of the fight.

"We've been talking to [Fury's management team] MTK, giving them the assurances from Joshua's side that all the details on the structure of the deal is approved from our side. And it is from Fury's side, as well.

"We're in a good place. It's fair to say that, in principle, both guys have agreed to that fight. Two fights.

"[There's] a lot to overcome in the meantime. We're moving in the right direction. I'm confident that both guys have giving their blessing for the fight to go ahead.

"The most difficult part of any deal is the financial element. I believe we're in a great place where both guys have agreed to what that should be.

"We have not signed contracts because there are still things to be worked out. 

"We're pushing towards a place where they can be drafted, for 2021. Both guys are in agreement. The structure of the deal has been put forward and agreed to by both parties."

Joshua is due to fight Kubrat Pulev in October or November but is currently injured, having sustained a knee problem while training.

He was pictured on crutches while attending a Black Lives Matter protest in Watford last week, with his left knee in a brace.

Promoter Bob Arum is confident a deal can be struck for a heavyweight blockbuster between Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua but insists the fight will not take place until next year.

The two Britons hold all of the major belts in boxing's blue riband division, with Joshua avenging his shock loss to Andy Ruiz Jr to reclaim the IBF, WBA and WBO straps last December.

Fury then battered Deontay Wilder to a seventh-round loss in Las Vegas in February to take the WBC title, leaving him once again on a collision course with Joshua.

However, each man has contractual obligations to uphold. Fury is committed to a third meeting with Wilder, with whom he shared a contentious draw in December 2018, while Joshua was set to meet IBF mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev in June before the coronavirus pandemic laid waste to those plans.

Arum, who promotes both Fury and Pulev, told Stats Perform News those fights will have to happen first but remains confident he can broker an agreement.

"We're going to have to wait for that fight until maybe the end of the first quarter of 2021. We've been talking about this at length – both Eddie Hearn, Frank Warren and myself.

"Obviously it would require both Joshua and Fury to be successful in the fights that they're already contracted for.

"If that's so, we would work together – all of us, MTK [Fury's management] – to get that fight on sometime early next year."

Arum's Top Rank promotional outfit relaunched boxing behind closed doors in Las Vegas this week and hopes to bring back shows with minimal attendance later in the year.

However, he concedes Fury v Wilder III is a fight of such magnitude and expense that it requires a live gate, meaning reports Sydney's Bankwest Stadium could stage the bout on Christmas Day that emerged this week are not as far-fetched as they might initially sound.

"Dean Lonergan [the promoter behind the proposal] is a good friend of mine. We did the Manny Pacquiao v Jeff Horn fight and he's been back and forth to me with the idea of doing that fight around Christmas in Sydney, Australia," he explained.

"There's the big, big stadium there. There's been a lot of support from the [local] government to do that fight and the Aussies are used to doing these big events around noon on a Sunday, which is equivalent to prime time in the United States on a Saturday night.

"It's all good but there are a number of questions. Will the authorities allow boxing or any of the sports events with full capacity in an outdoor stadium? We don't know that. I told Dean he's got to find out whether that's so.

"It's the same problem we have in the United States. If we can't do an event with a full capacity, then why go all the way over to Australia?"

Charles Martin is "ready and waiting" to fight Kubrat Pulev if Anthony Joshua is unable to recover from a knee injury.

Joshua was pictured on crutches while attending a Black Lives Matter protest in Watford last week, with his left knee in a brace.

According to Boxing Scene, promoter Eddie Hearn confirmed the IBF, WBA and WBO world heavyweight champion will be out of action for four weeks after injuring himself when running.

Joshua is due to fight Pulev in October or November this year, but Martin, beaten by Joshua at the O2 Arena in 2016, is keeping a close eye on his recovery.

Leon Margules, the president of Martin's promoters Warriors Boxing, told Sky Sports: "If Joshua is injured and can't defend on a mandatory basis, and the title becomes vacant, we'll fight Pulev for the vacant title.

"Charles Martin is fit, ready and waiting for that opportunity. We've been waiting for the opportunity for a long time.

"We were actually reading all about Joshua-Fury, and then thinking to ourselves that the IBF would then vacate the IBF title, because he didn't do his mandatory. He's already had exceptions.

"We would then demand the IBF vacate the title and allow Pulev to fight for Joshua's vacant title."

World heavyweight boxing champion Anthony Joshua has appeared at a Black Lives Matter protest, declaring the "virus" of racism is "out of control".

Joshua, the IBF, WBA and WBO champion, addressed a crowd of hundreds in his home town of Watford with an impassioned speech, while he also read a poem.

Protests have swept the United States and beyond in the aftermath of George Floyd's death, with the one Joshua attended on Saturday among several held in the United Kingdom.

Floyd died in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25 after a police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes.

"The virus has been declared a pandemic," Joshua said. "This is out of control. And I'm not talking about COVID-19. The virus I'm talking about is called racism.

"We stand united against a virus which has been instrumental in taking lives, taking lives of the young, old, rich, poor; a virus which is unapologetic and spreads across all sectors."

Joshua added: "We can no longer sit back and remain silent on these senseless, unlawful killings and sly racism on another human being - based on what? Only their skin colour.

"We need to speak out in peaceful demonstrations - just like today, so well done Watford.

"We must not use a demonstration for selfish motives and turn it into rioting and looting."

Joshua was seen wearing a knee brace and walking with crutches as well as using a scooter during part of the protest march.

In a widely reported statement, the Briton's camp insisted the brace was "a precautionary measure" that was not of significant concern after he had felt a "twinge" in training.

Joshua has accepted he will only fight once in 2020 due to the impact of the coronavirus crisis on the boxing calendar.

His next opponent is set to be Bulgarian challenger Kubrat Pulev.

Joshua and Pulev were due to fight at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium this month, but the contest was postponed, with a new date and venue still to be determined.

A showdown between Britain's world heavyweight kings Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury is too close to call due to their history as sparring partners.

That is the opinion of veteran American heavyweight Kevin Johnson, who went the distance with reigning WBC champion Fury in a December 2012 points loss, before suffering a second-round knockout defeat to now unified IBF, WBA and WBO beltholder Joshua two-and-a-half years later.

Fury is seen by many as the man to beat in the division, still unbeaten in 31 contests and coming off the back of a career-best demolition of feared knockout artist Deontay Wilder in February.

Joshua's stock took a considerable hit when he was stunned by Andy Ruiz Jr – another former Johnson foe – last June but he responded in style by closing out an emphatic points verdict in an instant rematch.

The 2012 Olympic champion was due to face Kubrat Pulev at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium this month before the coronavirus pandemic laid waste to those plans, meaning talk of a long-awaited meeting between Joshua and Fury has duly ramped up.

Back in 2010, a 20-year-old Joshua sparred a 21-year-old Fury in London. In remarks far removed from more recent smack talk, both were complimentary about the other's efforts.

Johnson is a seasoned campaigner across some of the most notable gyms in the sport and served as a sparring partner – as Joshua and Fury also did – for former unified champion Wladimir Klitschko.

Speaking to Stats Perform News, he explained those lessons learned underneath headguards from a decade ago will not have left either man.

"They've got history, they know each other," he explained, before pointing towards Joshua's rollercoaster win over a veteran Klitschko at Wembley three years ago.

"It won't go the way people think it will go. It's just like when Wladimir fought Anthony Joshua.

"They had history, we all had history because we all used to go to Austria and spar together. That was the central hub for all great fighters who wanted to get in with great fighters.

"AJ and Klitschko had history, Fury and AJ got history. If they never had history then I know who I would bet my money on, but they have history and they know what to look for, what to expect and what not to expect. The strengths, the weaknesses, the speed, the power – they know that already.

"That's the thing about us fighters. We need each other for great sparring but then we've got to mess around and fight each other. It's a gift and a curse.

"If someone knows you and you know that person it's a game of chess. I know your moves, I know how you are, how fast you move your pieces on the board, I know how distracting this could be and you know the same about me. So how can you say who's better?

"It's the type of fight, just like Klitschko and AJ at Wembley. I was there and I couldn't bet a dollar because I knew they knew each other."

Nevertheless, there seems little doubt where Johnson's loyalties would lie if the blockbuster bout comes to pass.

After facing Fury, he became well acquainted with 'The Gypsy King' and his fighting family – most notably his cousin and fellow heavyweight Hughie Fury and uncle and former trainer Peter Fury.

"The Furys are my favourite team in the whole world. Not only did they open their gym up to me, they opened their home up to me," Johnson recalled. "Those are the most humbling stories.

"When I had the fight coming up with Anthony Joshua, Peter called me and said come on over and they'd help me out.

"We were running every morning, one hour uphill on a road in Bolton. We did everything together.

"I had Tyson Fury, I had Hughie Fury. I was sparring with everyone.

"If anybody ever says anything about Furys, they've got a problem with me."

Johnson will fight fellow former world-title challenger Mariusz Wach at a behind-closed-doors event in Poland next Friday, as boxing emerges from the COVID-19 shutdown.

Roger Federer and Anthony Joshua have become accustomed to winning in their respective sports, but both suffered notable defeats on June 1 through the years.

Federer saw his hopes of a second successive title at the French Open dashed in 2010, while nine years later Joshua lost his heavyweight titles - and his perfect record - to Andy Ruiz.

The date has better memories for Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League, plus it is also memorable for marking the end of Shaquille O'Neal's stellar NBA career.

Take a look back at some of the great sporting moments to happen on this day.

 

2008 – Royals overcome Kings to be crowned

The inaugural IPL season concluded with a last-ball thriller. 

Rajasthan Royals, who were the top seeds at the end of the round-robin stage, just about overcame Chennai Super Kings in Mumbai, Sohail Tanvir the unlikely hero with the bat as he hit the single they required from the final delivery of the match.

Captain Shane Warne was also out in the middle for the winning run but Yusuf Pathan was the star performer for the Royals in the final, following up figures of 3-22 with the ball by making 56 in their successful chase. 

2010 – Federer's slam streak comes to an end

For a second successive year, Robin Soderling caused a huge upset at Roland Garros. 

The Swede had sensationally knocked out Rafael Nadal in the fourth round in 2009, though he went on to lose in the final to Federer. However, 12 months on, he gained revenge in the French capital, ending the champion's reign with a 3-6 6-3 7-5 6-4 win in their last-eight meeting.

With the loss, Federer saw his impressive run of reaching 23 consecutive grand slam semi-finals come to an end. 

2011 – Shaq stops: NBA legend announces retirement

After a 19-year career that saw him score 28,596 points, O'Neal decided the time was right to retire. The man nicknamed 'The Big Diesel' had come to the end of the road.

Drafted by the Orlando Magic with the first overall pick in 1992, the center won three successive titles after moving to the Los Angeles Lakers, where he teamed up with Kobe Bryant.

O'Neal - voted the league's MVP in 2000 - won a further championship after switching to the Miami Heat. There were also stints with the Phoenix Suns and the Cleveland Cavaliers in the latter stages before a final stop in Boston with the Celtics.

2019 – Replacement Ruiz stuns AJ in New York

Ruiz was not even originally due to be in the opposite corner to Joshua in Madison Square Garden.

The challenger was called in as a replacement when Jarrell Miller was removed from the headline act - and he seized the unexpected opportunity by producing a stunning result that sent shockwaves through the boxing world.

Joshua had won 22 straight as a pro and came into the bout as the IBF, WBA and WBO champion. However, he was dropped and stopped by Ruiz, who climbed off the canvas in the third round to sensationally turn the fight around. 

Anthony Joshua has ruled out the prospect of facing boxing great Mike Tyson on his return to the ring as he believes no fan would want to see the current heavyweight champion prevail.

Former undisputed world champion Tyson, now 53, is reportedly ready to fight again in exhibition and charity bouts.

And UFC Hall of Famer Tito Ortiz and Joshua's heavyweight rival Tyson Fury both claim to have been offered bouts against 'Iron Mike'.

But Joshua, who reclaimed his IBF, WBA and WBO belts against Andy Ruiz Jr in December, is not interested in facing a legend of the sport.

"With all due respect, I wouldn't [fight Tyson]," he told The Sun.

"Even if I fought Iron Mike and beat him, I think I'd be the only one cheering. People would boo. He is a legend. He is the greatest boxer of the modern era.

"There are only two recognised champions the world knows of, [Muhammad] Ali and Mike Tyson, the most recognised faces in the world when it comes to boxing."

Joshua insists he also has respect for Fury, even as he aims to unify the division.

"I don't want to be in that position where I am talking down Tyson Fury," he said.

"He is a great person and he has done great things in boxing, but until the day we fight, that is where it ends and I don't have anything else to say about him.

"I really want the belt and that is where I stand with Tyson Fury."

Frank Warren thinks Anthony Joshua's promoters want to avoid a heavyweight unification fight with Tyson Fury as it would be too risky for their fighter.

Bob Arum, Fury's co-promoter along with Warren, has held preliminary talks with Matchroom Boxing boss Eddie Hearn over the prospect of a mouthwatering all-British bout.

WBC champion Fury faces a third fight with Deontay Wilder next, while Joshua is due to step into the ring with Kubrat Pulev after their bout - scheduled for June - was called off amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Warren believes the main issue getting in the way of a deal being agreed for Fury and Joshua to fight is Matchroom promoters do not want it to happen.

He told talkSPORT: "My concern, first and foremost, although they talk about it a lot, Matchroom, I don't think they want the fight. I don't think they want to put AJ in with Tyson, I really don't think so.

"I hear all the noises, but actions speak louder than words and at the moment it seems to me – and I'm not normally wrong on things like this – I've got a gut feeling they don't want it and I think that's for a reason.

"I think Tyson's the best heavyweight on the planet, there's no doubt about that, and it's a big risk for them. It's a feeling from me, I’ve never had any conversations [with Matchroom] because I don't deal with them.

"I know they've had talks with the MTK people [Fury's managers], I know there's also been conversations with Bob Arum, but I've told them all the way through this I don't think they want it.

"If Tyson, which I believe he will do, beats AJ, then they've got a problem."

Warren also revealed that an offer has been received for Fury to fight Wilder in the Far East, but refused to confirm Macau in China was the location.

"I can't say that [the offer is from Macau] at the moment, [but] it is from the Far East," he said.

"The fight will be back end of the year. All of the big fights are gonna be back end of the year."

Anthony Joshua concedes he will be a keen viewer if Mike Tyson makes a boxing comeback – naming the former heavyweight king as his "ultimate inspiration".

Tyson is reportedly ready to fight again at 53 in exhibition and charity bouts, with a series of his explosive pad workouts going viral on social media.

Old rival Evander Holyfield and 48-year-old fellow Brooklyn native Shannon Briggs have been touted as potential opponents, although there has also been plenty of concern voiced over whether a man with such a chequered past should be considering lacing gloves once more.

Speaking to British GQ, current IBF, WBA and WBO champion Joshua explained he was not surprised to see Tyson active again due to his fighting instinct.

"This is what we breathe. This is what we are. And especially someone like Iron Mike Tyson, that's all that man knows," he said.

"For everyone else it's a comeback, but for him it's just what he does. He's a fighter, right? He's probably just took a little break but for everybody else it’s like, 'Oh my God! Mike Tyson is making a comeback!'

"But for Mike Tyson it's like, 'This is what I do. I'm a fighter by nature'. So, if he's back in the ring then I would love to see it. I'd definitely be one of the viewers, that's for sure."

Tyson's whirlwind story combining ferocious knockouts, phenomenal achievements, controversies and disgrace means he remains one of the most recognisable sportsmen on the planet, and his exploits unquestionably resonated with Joshua, who explained he used to watch the American's hefty highlights reel on YouTube as a teenager.

"The guy took himself from his neighbourhood, which wasn't the prettiest of scenes, up to an amateur champion, to the youngest ever world heavyweight champion, to one of the most recognised faces of the sport of boxing," Joshua added.

"The only two faces I recognised in boxing, globally, are Muhammad Ali and Mike Tyson. They're the main faces of this sport, so from where he started to where he is now, he's my ultimate motivation.

"The reason I say that is because he was the closest guy to my generation, so he holds a special place in my heart."

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